We know that prayer is important for our lives and we are often reminded of the fact that we need to pray more. Who can boast that he prays enough? At the same time, there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. He does not want us to go around having a bad conscience about asking for more. Prayer is a wonderful opportunity where we can talk to God every day. An elixir of life, the pulse and the very breathing that we need to live. But prayer is also sometimes hard work that must be done to advance the positions in the kingdom of God and be able to pave the way for the gospel to reach all people. Charles Spurgeon, sometimes called the preacher of the preachers, understood the importance of raising up people who prayed. He said “I would rather train a man to pray than ten men to preach.”
“I would rather train a man to pray than ten men to preach.”
– Charles Spurgeon
In our strategic plan where we set the direction for the coming years, we raise prayer as crucial for everything we want to do. Already today, we have prayer as a priority, both as employees and teams, but we see the need to grow in this area as well. We want to develop our prayer culture where we want to be able to say that in 2025 “A strong prayer culture is established and an obvious part of our strategic work. A basis for commitment and decisions. “
Prayer has always been and will continue to be absolutely crucial in IBRA’s work to reach all people. Paul was fully aware of this and often encouraged intercession for himself, his team and the work to be done.
”I urge you, brethren,forfor the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ andforthe love that the Spirit gives, to fight withmebyaskto Godfor me” (Rom 15:30) .
Paul’s intercessors did not sit on the bench or in the stands but were part of the common work team.
“ And you will help with your prayer for us, so that there will be many who thank God for the grace we receive through the participation of many .” (2 Cor 1:11).
It is precisely through the participation of many in prayer that IBRA for more than 60 years has been able to continue to give the gospel to people all over the world. Today, the challenge is to reach the least reached peoples. Ethnic groups that for various reasons are the most difficult to reach. Prayer is today and the years ahead if possible even more important than before if we are to help reach these ethnic groups.
The journey of discipleship is IBRA’s way of capturing and describing the key elements of the strategy we use to reach people with the gospel and make disciples who make disciples who form new churches or grow existing churches. The crucial part of that strategy is prayer. Strategic, extraordinary prayer that changes the conditions for reaching people. Prayer that resists the enemy’s attempt to shut down and silence the voices about Jesus. Not just prayer that lives its own life but intercessors who pray strategically with an ear to what the Spirit says and who can connect it directly to the activity we are in. In the prayer Our Father teaches us to pray “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”. This means that we ask for help to be able to listen to what God is doing right now. That I may be a tool for what He wants to do and not that He should bless what I want to do. The difference is enormous. It’s about the awareness that my life is not about me in the first place, but it is about God. I’m a piece of the puzzle in God’s great plan, and that’s exactly what I want to be.
At the end of the spring, several of us experienced in prayer that God put the Sahel especially on our hearts. The countries south of the Sahara and especially Mali, Niger and Chad. This meant that we are now addressing that issue and increasing our involvement and activities in that area. God leads our steps as we pray and helps us to make new decisions and make new priorities. Keep praying for the Sahel.
Another country that has come into focus in recent weeks is Afghanistan. Here we can feel great powerlessness in the face of developments. We are very limited in what we can do but we can pray! We want to encourage you to pray for Afghanistan.
We thank you who sometimes, or regularly, pray for IBRA’s work. You are part of the team! An important part that is absolutely crucial for the work we perform. We also know that prayer is linked to many promises. When we seek God, hear His voice and pray according to His will.
“And this is the confidence we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he will hear us. And when we know that he hears us, whatever we ask, we also know that we already have what we asked of him. ” (1 Jn 5:15)