Job 12:23-25 “He increaseth the nations, and destroyeth them: he enlargeth the nations, and straiteneth them again. He taketh away the heart of the chief of the people of the earth, and causeth them to wander in a wilderness where there is no way. They grope in the dark without light, and he maketh them to stagger like a drunken man.”
America in the fall of 1857, like today, had been groping in the dark without light. They had been staggering like a drunken man. They had been wandering in the wilderness. Jeremiah Lanphir’s Handbill stated the following:
“HOW OFTEN SHALL I PRAY?
As often as the language of prayer is in my heart; as often as I see my need of help; as often as I feel the power of temptation; as often as I am made sensible of any spiritual declension or feel the aggression of a worldly spirit.
In prayer we leave the business of time for that of eternity, and intercourse with men for intercourse with God.
A day Prayer Meeting is held every Wednesday, from 12 to 1 o’clock, in the Consistory building in the rear of the North Dutch Church, corner of Fulton and William Streets (entrance from Fulton and Ann Streets).
This meeting is intended to give merchants, mechanics, clerks, strangers, and businessmen generally an opportunity to stop and call upon God amid the perplexities incident to their respective avocations. It will continue for one hour; but it is also designed for those who may find it inconvenient to remain more than five or ten minutes, as well as for those who can spare the whole hour.”
The prayer meetings offered the opportunity to focus on the business of eternity. The business of time needed to yield to more pressing matters. Based on the results, the business of eternity was long overdue, greatly needed, and magnificently impactful.
God’s presence is what gave this meeting, and others like it, their power. There was no centralized earthly authority. There was no earthly master plan. There was instead a single meeting, ordained by God, which prompted other meetings to spring up all around the country. God tugged on the hearts of others, laymen and pastors alike, to replicate a focus on the business of eternity.
Maybe God is tugging on your heart to take the lead. Maybe a weekly, lunchtime prayer meeting should start in your church, your community, your home, or your place of business. Maybe people around you would welcome an opportunity to stop and call upon God amid the perplexities incident to their respective avocations. Maybe God can use your example to direct others toward the business of eternity.
PLEASE PRAY WHETHER GOD WOULD HAVE YOU TO START A REGULAR PRAYER MEETING. The business of eternity awaits your initiative and your leadership. The results will be left up to God.
THOUGHT: The attached article is one I came across recently that further indicates the welcoming environment you may find when you offer up the opportunity to pray and receive prayer: