Thursday, 31 May 2012

A time to shine - 70 day cascade of prayer....

Over the last 2 days I have been involved in the Prayer Relay Baton "A time to shine" 70 days of Prayer and Blessing for the British Isles and Ireland. More than Gold and the World Prayer Centre have coordinated the Prayer Relay of Blessing, to link the 70 locations where the Torch will stop overnight. They contacted church leaders in each of the 70 cities or towns, so the prayer relay of blessing can go unbroken through the 70 days. The way the Prayer Relay of Blessing will work is as follows:
When the Torch starts its journey from Lands End on Saturday 19th May, Christian leaders in Cornwall will travel to the next main stopping place (Plymouth). Here they will bring prayers of blessing and hand on a
symbolic prayer baton to Christian leaders there. That simple process will continue day by day. That means on 29th May, Bangor leaders travelled to Chester and on May 30th Chester leaders travelled to Stoke and so on through the 70 days. As a result, each community receives and releases prayers of blessing.

This is a strategic time for our nation as we host the 30th Olympiad and celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Her Majesty our Queen. Brian Mills (Director of InterPrayer International Partnership) prophesied in 2005: "So that, when hundreds of thousands of athletes, media, supporters and organisers come to Britain for the Olympics in 2012, we (that is we as God’s people) will be ready to welcome them into the presence of God. Just think, the nations will be coming to us. To prepare the way for the church to welcome them with love, grace, charm, politeness, and with a positive message born out of God’s love in our hearts."
God has spoken to a number of people about this unique 70 day season and all are seeking to work together through the More than Gold 70 day cascade of prayer and praise "Shine as the Flame Travels". On 18 May, 7:14 hosts an open air prayer event in Plymouth and will continue to do so each night before the Flame arrives in the 70 locations. On 19 May the Praise Bus will start its journey from Land’s End around Great Britain, two hours ahead of the Olympic Flame, and the More Than Gold 70 Day Prayer Relay begins. This will travel between all 70 towns and cities listed, with the prayer baton, containing prayers and scriptures, being handed over in each place around midday. For details of resources, times & places, go to: http://www.morethangold.org.uk/ ; 7:14 facebook page; http://www.thejourneyfromescalls.co.uk/   http://www.worldprayer.org.uk/

In Chester we got involved as we have small network of churches working together in Chester and across West Cheshire called Link Up, I lead this and we have Prayer as one of our main values and have for some time linked in from the local area into the national initiatives, so when the Olympic Flame was coming to Chester we wanted to use the Prayer Relay as a focus of prayer for Chester and the nation. We received the Prayer Baton on Tuesday 29 from Bangor - 3 people travelled across and inside the baton there were prayer and blessing written for Chester, we held a short time of prayer together at St Peters Ecumenical Centre in Chester.

Yesterday 6 of us from 3 different churches travelled to Stoke to the Beacon House of Prayer and we handed the Prayer Baton onto Stoke with it a book of prayer and blessings for Stoke we had put together over 6 weeks from across different churches/organisations in Chester plus some more prayer and blessings inside the baton. Today the baton goes onto Bolton.

Here is the Prayer of Blessing being prayed over each city and town:
We stand in the mighty name of Jesus and bless you (name of city eg Plymouth on Day 1)
That you might prosper under the mighty hand of God.
We bless you that justice and righteousness might take their proper place within your boundaries. We bless you that the favour of the Lord might rest upon you and give you peace.
We bless you that the Father’s compassion might fall upon your people. We bless your poor that they might be lifted up.
We bless you that the knowledge of Jesus might come in amongst you like a flood.
We bless the people of God in (name of city) that they might rise up with servant authority and become a people of blessing.
We bless you that the joy of the Lord might be your strength. Amen.

Maybe you could pray it over your city or town and over another city/town in the British Isles...