Tim and Jill Way

Adventures of the Way Family

24-7 Prayer: Celebration

Friday, October 23 — A momentous day in the life of the Tulsa Boiler Room plant. We gathered at 7:00 as we do every Friday night, but this night was different somehow. It was the kick-off to our first ever week of 24-7 prayer. We had dreamed of this for a long time – more than two years, actually. And now it was happening. The preparations were complete. Invitations had been sent out. Flyers made. Friends called. Announcements given in churches. An online sign-up system put in place. The prayer room itself was beautiful, with new blank paper covering one wall and new maps of our city and world adorning another corner. To my amazement, people were signing up. It was really going to happen. And so we gathered on Friday with a sense of excitement and expectation. It felt significant.

Sometime after 8:00 we gathered in a circle and held hands. We began to speak out prayers for our troubled neighborhood. Freedom. Holiness. Love. Acceptance. Redemption. Healing. Courage. Beauty. Hope. Truth. I believe in years to come we’ll look back to this night as the launching of the Tulsa Boiler Room Church. Not only were we lifting up continual prayer for those around us, but we were establishing ourselves as a community of prayer. A group of friends desperate and determined to see the Kingdom of God in our midst; to see redemption for our city.

Later as some cleaned up the grocery store where we have our gatherings, a small group moved a few paces to the north and began praying in the prayer room. At around 11:00, some of these decided to go over to Oktoberfest – a big party / festival that was taking place at a park in the neighborhood – and gather prayer requests. They came back full of excitement as they began filling the walls with the heart-cries of people whom Jesus loves. ‘Pray for my marriage.’ ‘I’m having surgery next week.’ ‘My friends’ marriage.’ ‘My broken family.’ ‘To know God.’ Not too deep maybe, but very real. And who knows what happened as all week long people came into the room and lifted these simple requests up before the Father?

As the week continued, the Spirit of God faithfully worked in our hearts. One man thought he couldn’t pray for an hour, but after a day or two was looking for two-hour slots to fill. Others found new freedom in worship, as they danced before the Lord in glorious praise. I personally heard a call to greater surrender, obedience, and commitment. Some experienced great highs and were filled with excitement. Others simply plodded along in faithful determination. One man drove back through the night from a business trip in Kansas City to make his 5:00 am prayer slot. My five year old son wrote on the wall, “Thank! You! For! Making! The! Animals!” Others wrote of failure and hope and gratitude and longing and the beauty of God.

I like this 24-7 praying thing. Even better, I think Jesus does too.


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