The season of Advent explores the themes of longing and anticipation. We look back to the expectations that Israel had for the coming of the Messiah, and we look ahead with anticipation for Christ’s return. Here are some reflections from the Prepare Him Room 2021 Advent prayer event.
At times, Advent can become overcrowded by Christmas. In a small way, the Prepare Him Room Advent prayer times were intended to prevent that overcrowding. These prayer times were opportunities to pause, reflect, listen, and pray into the season. Words from the Prophet Isaiah helped to shape these times of prayer.
Summary of the event
Over the five days, the Lord met and led us as a team through significant times of prayer. There were several kairos moments experienced by individuals and as a group. These were times where the Holy Spirit took the prayer to a deeper, richer level.
During the 12-noon call, we averaged around 25 people, and, in the evening, there were between 10 and 15 people. Participants joined these prayer times from across the United States and Canada. We also had people join in from the United Kingdom and one person from South Korea.
As a group, we began with a call to worship and a time of praise. This worship time focussed on fixing our eyes upon Jesus. Then after listening to the Scripture reading for the day, there was a time of listening prayer followed by an opportunity to share the words, pictures, songs, Scriptures, or impressions the Lord had given.
Once this discernment had been shared and common themes highlighted, the group split into breakout rooms of four or five people to pray into the themes. These prayer times lasted 15 minutes. Then the group regathered, and each briefly shared how they had been led during the prayer time. As the time allowed, the group would move back into corporate prayer for the rest of the hour.
At several points during the week the Holy Spirit would draw us deeper. For example, at one point, as we were opening in praise and worship, the leader played the song Holy, Holy, Holy via YouTube. As the video played, you could see people pulled into worship, and there was an incredible sense of God’s presence. As the music finished, the group remained in a time of silence that just hung there. At first, I wondered if it had been my personal experience. But as I spoke with people after the call, others witnessed to that sense of God’s presence during the worship.
Another Kairos moment happened in one of the small group breakouts. As the larger group got back together, they shared that their prayer time had centred around the Scripture for the day in a profound way. As they discerned a direction for prayer, the Lord would highlight a topic for them, and they realized that the passage related directly to that topic and gave prayer points about how to pray. After praying, they discerned the next issue and again, the Scripture passage provided the direct guidance the group needed for their prayer. They shared with the rest of the intercessors how they moved through several different areas of prayer needs and how the Scripture passage had provided them with the guidance they needed. There was a sense of excitement and wonder at how God was leading them.
Discernment and Insight
Along with the Kairos moments, people shared some great words of discernment with the group. On Friday, the passage focused on the theme of light. During the listening time, one participant found themselves reflecting on how Scripture begins and ends with light. And then there is the emphasis placed upon Jesus as the light that comes into the darkness.
Another profound insight was made at how big Advent is. The passages all talk about all nations. The coming of Messiah and the expectation of what he would do is big on impact and change, and the entire heavenly host singing accompanies the message to the shepherds. There’s a sense of expansion in this season.
A third insight that was interesting came out of looking at Isaiah 61. The theme of gardening, growing and seeds was identified. It was recognized that after we plant a seed, there’s often the need for nutrients in the form of fertilizer made from manure. A comment was made that God even uses the bad stuff in our lives to help us grow. And that God never wastes anything.
Here are a couple of testimonies about how the prayer times impacted some of those who participated:
Prepare Him Room created a Holy place where God conducted his symphonies of prayer and worship for the week. Every day we experienced his joy and presence among us. There were moments where his presence was so palpable you could feel his holy hush fall upon us, intimate private kairos moments. Thank you for showing us, God, that you are all we need. In a vulnerable, helpless baby were the seeds of freedom, healing and deliverance. He turned our hearts intimately towards him. He prepared our hearts for more room where there was no room in the Inn. Thank you, God, for PRMI.Jeannie (Canada)
For one of the Prepare Him Room sessions, it was awesome to see how God led us to similar themes to pray into after some listening.
While we were praying as a group. One of the intercessors prayed out words she was hearing. It was addressed to the group, but I heard that the words were for me as well and to listen closely.
Here is some of what was prayed: “Israel, seek me and you will find me. I deeply love you. I am your sovereign Almighty King and I am your loving tender Shepherd, I am everything in between, I am all you need”.
I felt like the Lord spoke that directly to my heart at that moment and I was deeply encouraged! These are the truths I’ve been holding onto this season. I am thankful for the encouragement that came unexpectedly. I am grateful for the prayer calls to make room for the Holy Spirit to work!Jacob (USA)
We began to pray during one of the breakout sessions, and one person kept on praying. He was on fire with his prayers and weaved so much Scripture into them. It was just glorious listening to him. A couple of others prayed between his prayers, but primarily this one individual. But that was not a problem. I thought, “you know, if he just prays for the rest of the time, that is fine with me.” I began to pray that he would continue to listen to the Spirit and pray as led.
This prayer paved the way for someone to pray, “Ignite us where we are placed; illumine the work of your Holy Spirit; manifest your presence in our midst, with our fellowship of believers.” This prayer was confirmed by another person who had seen a vision simultaneously of little embers. Jesus was holding a poker and stoking the fire, and little embers were shooting out and dropping all over. It was hope for the harvest.
As I reflected on the time, it was wonderful how the initial prayers ushered the Spirit into the group allowing the words and pictures of the harvest to come forward. It was amazing to watch.Cindy (USA)
Generally, some themes that stood out for me were hope and joy, restoration, Jesus as Emmanuel and our needing to receive Him. We should not barricade the door to our hearts as Mary, Joseph and Jesus were shut out of the inn; to not reject the greatest Gift, but to receive. Jesus is our hope and the Light in these dark times; may He shine through us, as well.Christine (USA)
Throughout the week, we prayed for ourselves. We prayed for family members, communities and even nations to have encounters with the Lord. We found ourselves encouraged to look to the Lord in expectation for outpourings of his Spirit and his grace that would bring renewal and revival. The Lord united us together as a global family, praying for God’s will to be done during this Advent in our churches, our communities, and our lives. We were refreshed, encouraged, and made ready by the Lord to move and to work as we celebrate the incarnation of Jesus, our Lord.
The Prepare Him Room Advent prayers have concluded. But a group continues to meet Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings, 12 noon, Eastern Time to listen, discern and pray together. New friends are always welcome.