They’d been walking and praying, praying and walking, for nearly three hours. As eager newcomers to the Kurdish homelands, they were disappointed by their lack of significant encounters with Kurds. They’d heard about the legendary Kurdish hospitality and they were anxious to live it. Their primary commission, though, was clear: Pray! Ask that God would visit the Kurds and enable them to hear and receive the Truth when it was presented to them. Sure, they’d been praying at every mosque; sure, they’d been praying at every school; sure, they’d been praying at every business; sure, they’d been praying at every home; sure, they’d been praying at every intersection. Still, they desired to sit down and spend meaningful time with a real live Kurd! The group’s leader looked up at a mass of electrical wires overhead and said, “God, we need a Zaccheus encounter!” When they turned the next corner, they came upon a young man who invited the group of four into his home. There this young man, and his family, treated these prayerwalkers to true Kurdish hospitality – water, chocolates, juice, food, tea, and fruit!
That evening, as the team sat together, they discussed what had happened, how they had felt during the long hours of “work.” They rejoiced that they had persevered through those long hours, that they had truly spent time worshipping God, begging Him to bless Kurds with the Truth. They rejoiced at God’s faithfulness, His timing and His provision. They marveled at how the God of the Ages cared for them, and how He equally cares for the Kurds.
“Prayer is the battle; it is a matter of indifference where you are. Whichever way God engineers circumstances, the duty is to pray. Never allow the thought – ‘I am of no use where I am’; because you certainly can be of no use where you are not. … We won’t pray unless we get thrills, that is the intensest form of spiritual selfishness. We have to labour along the line of God’s direction, and He says pray. ‘Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that He will send forth labourers into His harvest.’” – Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest.
Was that family converted? No. Did that family hear a full presentation of the Gospel? Perhaps not. But what that family experienced was interaction with four believing Americans on-mission, four believing Americans who were the face of God! They were prayed for in the name of Jesus, individually and corporately – probably for the very first time in their lives. The family and the walkers exchanged pictures. They exchanged emails. They exchanged parts of each other’s lives. This family was left with a copy of the Sermon on the Mount and the on-going prayers of at least those four prayerwalkers. Seeds were planted.
Prayerwalking isn’t glamorous; it isn’t easy; it isn’t even picture-worthy. It is evidence of individuals becoming, in this land, living sacrifices – and that cannot be truly captured in either a picture or a story!