“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
2 Chronicles 7:14
Her picture sits there staring at me, not only on the tabletop and the desktop, but forever framed in my heart. It was on my last mission trip to El Salvador that I met her. As we entered the church, there she knelt on the concrete floor praying. Who knows what she was praying that day, but it was very obvious that God leaned in close and heard and answered her request.
It was a church we weren’t especially looking forward to re-visiting. On the previous years visit there, we found the hearts to be hard and closed off. As Toni Hebel with Forgiving Forward Ministry shared the forgiveness message, they sat seemingly unmoved and unchanged. The physical ground was hard, dry and in great need of rain, but the hearts were just as parched and desperate. As the message was shared, the rain began to pound on the tin roof. Surely God longed to pour out His forgiveness, healing and provision on these women, yet they remained stoic. It felt as if they had come only to receive the gifts and help that we carried, but were uninterested in the greatest gift of Jesus Christ and His forgiveness to all mankind.
But upon arrival on this visit, we stepped onto a ground ready to receive. The people were warm and welcoming, tender and desperate. They drank in the message of hope that we shared and responded in great faith. There was an abundance of joy and expectation.
What had changed? What brought the difference that we now experienced?
The pastor had called the people to pray for an outpouring of the presence of God and a bountiful blessing over our time together. It was as if this man of God could hardly wait for us to feed his people, so that they in turn could feed us. He called his women to gather around us American women and pray for us.
We wept and knelt in the presence of a holy God responding to the prayers of a people surrendered to Him. The pastor then began to share a word from the Lord specifically for us. I didn’t understand much of the word he gave us that day, but I sincerely believe God has been bringing understanding and fulfillment to this over the past 3 years.
This one woman had responded to the call to prayer with all of her being. I was told she had fasted and prayed on this hard concrete floor for an entire week. She called out to God, humbled herself, sought His face and turned and He heard and answered. I saw 2 Chronicles 7:14 fulfilled in this place.
What might happen if we took the “2 Chronicles 7:14 Call to Prayer” seriously. God gave the first call to prayer, but in recent days, all of our Christian leaders are calling His People to pray.
Will we answer? Will we become the woman in the frame, poured out in prayer?
You never know if your obedience, your surrendered crying out to the Lord, might bring a mighty turn in your home, your church, your city, your country, our world. Little did this small praying woman know that her life of prayer was a part of moving God on that day, but her prayers continue to touch many today.
Let us answer the call to pray and watch expectantly for the Spirit of God
to move across our land!