When you hear the phrase “house of prayer,” what do you think of? Over my many years of ministry I have wrestled with this dilemma. I do not hesitate to plead guilty to failing to make God’s house a house of prayer. Attempts have been made, big pushes have been initiated, prayer meetings have been started, prayer emphases have been introduced into weekend worship services, that and much more. But for many reasons the impetus behind the ministry of prayer all too often runs out and the sound of prayer in the house of God has fallen silent.
Recently while exploring “heaven open earth invaded” as a personal prayer project, the call was strong to build a House where He dwells. I was wondering how it was ever going to come about. I felt the Lord say to me, “You are my house. You can begin by praying ‘Lord make me a house of prayer!’”
It was suddenly simple and plain. As a temple of the Holy Spirit I am the dwelling place of God and in every aspect His house, and a key building block or living stone in the house which is His church.
On a practical level, what does it mean to be a house of prayer? I’ll be honest with you. This is where I am still “in process” and learning what God wants me to know about this rich topic. So I began, patterned on biblical principles, what I have learned and continue to experience in my relationship with God. ‘This is what the Lord say, “Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. Where is the house you will build for me? Where will my resting place be? Has not my hand made all these things, and so they came into being?’ declares the Lord. ‘This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word’” Isaiah 66:1, 2.
I simply bring myself and my heart. Prayer then is simply me and God being together, sharing with each other.
When God visits he comes to stay. He is not only interested in visitation but also habitation. He is looking for a place to dwell. It is in this environment that He gently whispers, ‘”I want to open the windows of heaven to pour down such a blessing that you will not be able to contain it. It will overflow and pour out blessing on others. But first you must become a house of prayer, for through prayer and faith my will can be fulfilled”.
Lord make me a house of prayer!