Statement From the GOGCC Leadership Team About Our Monthly Prayer Meetings
By The GOGCC Leadership Team | May 17, 2016
The Glory of God on Cape Cod leadership team put together this statement below to reflect our heart and thoughts regarding our monthly prayer meetings of people from different church backgrounds. We propose reading it together at our prayer meetings as we are always helped by reminders of our purposes in these meetings.
Statement of our unity in Christ for prayer meetings:
We gather here to pray in one accord. Our unity glorifies God who has reconciled us to Himself and to one another. We respect our local church distinctions and secondary theological differences and we love and receive one another in Christ and are united in Him as He is revealed in the Bible and historically understood in the Church. Our united prayer is an instrument God uses to give birth to His purposes on Cape Cod and to the ends of the earth.
Our thought process behind the statement:
As we all know, we typically segregate ourselves around our denominations, our preferred church culture/flavor, our favorite style of worship music, our ethnic groups, etc. Since the Lord has been building relational unity among us and we are sensing Him leading us towards a corporate multi-denominational, multi-ethnic, multi-generational united prayer movement, we must all make a conscious effort towards accepting one another in our differences, and encourage others to do so. As you know, we can all encourage our circle of infleunce towards something
(A vision/cause/groups of people/individuals), or incite them against it, either overtly or subtly.
The Glory of God on Cape Cod leadership team itself, as well as the network of pastors and leaders involved, is composed of individuals that come from different theological backgrounds, different preferences regarding worship music and church flavor, and we may differ on some secondary theological issues as well. However, we are all strongly united on the essentials of the gospel, and we share a common and deep desire to see the glory of God manifested on Cape Cod with multitudes coming to Chrsit. We confess that we ourselves have been guilty at times of letting criticism and judgment creep into our hearts towards others who may differ from us, but we repent of such attitude, and we refuse to harbor it in our hearts for the sake of Christ and His glory. We encourage you to do the same.
As the beloved body of Christ on Cape Cod who are recipients of the abundant grace and love of God, let us all stretch our hearts towards one another, set aside any criticism or judgment in our hearts, and accept one another's differences and expression of worship; young and old, charismatic and non-charismatic.
At the same time, let us be deeply rooted in the word of God, have a sound theology of prayer, revival, do everything in decency and order as the Scriptures teach us, AND be open and give freedom to the Holy Spirit at our monthly prayer meetings.
It's a balancing act that we all need to aim for.
In J. Edwin Orr's teaching on the Great Awakenings in America, he points out how different churches/denominations maintained their individual distinctives, yet had relational unity in their diversity, and prayed together corporately. This has been a core value of the GOGCC prayer movement since its inception.
In last month's GOGCC prayer meeting invitation, Pastors Earl Roberts of Marstons Mills Community Church exhorted us, "Now is the time to press in, together, as the one Body of Christ in her glorious array-all ages, confessions, expressions, and cultures-and with one voice call upon the name of the Lord for a revelation of His glory here on our beloved Cape Cod."
Also, Pastor Rob Wheeler of Osterville Baptist Church recently exhorted us in this month's email invitation, "This is why the enemy's deception is so devious. He knows that when we pray the gospel advances. He spins a web of deceit around us, which leaves us convinced that we are too busy to pray and too different from one another to pray together. He divides us. He tells the young that the old are no longer relevant. He tells the old that the young have nothing to say. He tells us that our theological distinctions are insurmountable, even though we can all agree upon the one true gospel and the inerrancy of Scripture. And in doing so, he effectively pulls revivals power cord (which is corporate prayer) from the source of power (our great and glorius God to whom we pray). Don't believe the lie! We are not too busy to pray. We are not too different to pray together."
The analogy that corporate prayer is the power cord that connects us to the source of power is just powerful!
Coming together to pray corporately necessitates all of us moving towards loving and accepting one another, and encouraging others to do so. If we succeed in that, we have our "power cord" put together.
The First Great Awakening was marked by united multi-church prayer meetings, and in Jonathan Edwards' writings he stated that a key verse of these prayer meetings was Zechariah 8:21, "The inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, 'Let us continue to go and pray before the Lord, and seek the Lord of hosts. I myself will go also."
So join us at our monthly prayer meetings. Let your friends know that you are going, and invite them to join you!
We encourage you to share this email with your circle of friends, so we can all spread the message of cultivating a culture of honor, love, and unity among the body of Christ on Cape Cod.
May the Lord richly bless you.
The Glory of God on Cape Cod leadership team