It’s early Saturday morning in Washington, D.C. The sun is just beginning to rise over the U.S. Capitol, and the mile of National Mall between the Capitol and Washington Monument has been buzzing with 57 tents of worship that started at 10pm the night before. 50 humble-sized tents are filled with representatives from every state. Even at these early hours of the morning, there are small crowds around tents, people dancing and clapping to the Lord.
From October 6–9th, an estimated 30,000 people from all over the nation converged on the National Mall to give the Lord an offering of love and worship for 56 hours non-stop. Gathered not around a speaker, or personality, but around the presence of the Lord, these worshippers gave it their all.
I grew up going to church. Every Sunday I would walk into church with my family, climb the stairs to the balcony, and sing a combination of worship songs with the congregation. Some of the congregation could sing, some couldn’t. But still, we sang our songs—waving our flags, clapping our hands (on and off-beat) and tapping our well-meaning, clumsy feet to the strums of the guitar and the beat of the drums. I loved it.
But did you ever wonder why we sing in church? Why do we attempt to reach those unattainable notes with our morning voices? Why do we repeat the words to well-known songs over and over again, week after week?
For the past 9 years, I’ve been blessed to be a part of missional communities of prayer, seeking to establish a culture of unceasing prayer and worship that extols the greatness and worth of the Godhead 24/7. Like David, we believe that “God is great and greatly to be praised” (Ps. 145:3) and that His promises are still alive and powerful and waiting to be fulfilled at the end of the age. These promises warrant the Church’s response of contending intercession, “reminding” God of His promises until He sends them like fire upon the earth (Is. 62:6-7).
Just as it was in the early church, many young adults today are committing themselves to serve God in prayer rooms across the earth. Primarily, they are committing to standing before the Lord in worship, to gazing upon His beauty and contending in intercession for the burdens of God’s heart, and to laying down their lives in simple obedience that Jesus would receive the reward of His suffering in all nations.
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