John Franklin tells in his book And the Place Was Shaken of going with a team for a two-week crusade in Mombasa, Kenya. He said there was no way to describe those days except that the glory of God simply descended. As they went from house to house presenting the gospel, the results were phenomenal.
One time when his team of three walked down a dirt road, a man approached them saying, "Are you from America?" After replying that they were, the man continued. "Are you one of the ones who has come here to tell us the word of God?"
Franklin answered, "Yes."
The man solemnly said, "We've heard that you've come, and we've heard of Jesus and his great power. Tell me, how does one become his follower? My friends and I want to know."
After Franklin explained the plan of salvation, the man immediately said, "Let's pray."
Franklin thought that was too easy so explained again. The man said impatiently, "I understood the first time. Let's pray!"
Wherever Franklin's team walked, God's presence so permeated the land that often people were saved by the dozens. Nearly 30,000 in that city of roughly a million people responded to the gospel. What was the reason for such a manifestation of God's presence?
Months earlier prayer meetings had begun in that city. During their two-week stay a different church prayed all night each night. Fervent prayer meetings had prepared the way for God to visit them.
Many of you have prayed with us for open doors for the Come to the Fire conference. But we need more than an open door. Doors will open when our fervent prayer meetings for revival prevail with God. He wants to revive the churches in America as much as He wanted to revive the dry bones in Ezekiel's vision. The words God spoke to Ezekiel are words for us as well.
Ezekiel saw a valley that was full of "very dry" bones. They had been dead a long time. "They were scattered everywhere across the ground and were completely dried out" (Ezekiel 37:2 NLT). They lacked both life and unity.
God asked him, "Can these bones live?"
Ezekiel dared not limit God, but he saw no hope. "Oh, Sovereign LORD, you alone know."
God told Ezekiel to prophesy to the bones that He would put life into them. He would even put flesh and muscles on them and cover them with skin. He would put breath into them, and they would come to life. "Then you will know that I am the LORD" (vs. 6).
Preaching to dry bones would seem to be a waste of time. A skeleton isn't listening. But there is incredible power in God's Word.
So Ezekiel gave the message. Suddenly as he spoke, there was a rattling noise across the valley. The bones of each body came together as complete skeletons. As he watched, muscles and flesh formed over the bones. Then skin formed to cover their bodies, but "they still had no breath in them."
They were perfect corpses. Many churches look perfect. The Word is preached. Everything is done decently and in order. But there is little spiritual life.
God had one more thing for Ezekiel to do. He told Ezekiel to prophesy to the breath. The word "breath" is the same as the word used for Spirit. Only Spirit-anointed prayer to God would revive those dead bones.
So Ezekiel did pray and because he prayed, "breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet-a vast army." They were now not only living-they were an army ready for battle.
What Opens Doors?
John Franklin wrote that if we are to see a spiritual awakening, "then there must be fervent, intense prayer meetings sprouting up all over this land." Revival hungry people praying together will cause the glory of God to descend.
One lady wrote that she has been convicted to do more to pray Come to the Fire to her city. "I am going to invite a group familiar with CTTF here in this city who I know has a heart for revival and who know how to pray and seek the heart of God, to join me in asking God if it is to be here and that if He says yes, then they will help me form a Host Committee."
Is God also asking you to gather with others to ask God to bring a glorious visitation as He did to Mombasa? While we wait for God to open doors for a Come to the Fire conference, He waits for our desperate prayers meetings.
One who has been paying the price for an outpouring of God's presence is Nancy Jesudass. Nancy heard God's call to intercede and became burdened for our nation. For several years He led her to fast 40 days and pray for America. Her burden deepened. Since then she has spoken at Come to the Fire and other places pleading with people to become intercessors so God might revive the churches of America. Nancy's book, A Call to America, is taken from some of those talks.
After reading A Call to America, one lady wrote, "What spoke to me most was the lack of corporate prayer...I have asked the Lord to give me a burden, no more like a passion, for the souls of our children."
If you want a deeper passion to see revival come to God's people and a spiritual awakening in your area, read Nancy's book.
Chapter titles include:
Why I Love America
The Dream That Intensified My Burden
How Big Is Your Burden?
This small book is priced reasonably so you can provide one for every one in your group. Please order at acalltoamerica.org
May God infuse our prayer meetings with a deep fervency and an encounter with God.