A Call for Repentance and Prayer. At the turn of the millennium, many believers in Cape Town, South Africa, sensed God calling them to seek God in repentance and prayer and to call people across their country to assemble in united prayer for their cities and nation. People filled halls and stadiums of every size.
Soon gatherings like it—all meeting on the same day of the year—multiplied across Africa. Year b year, millions sought God together from almost every stream or tradition of Christian faith in every country on the continent. African Christians issued the same call for repentance and prayer to believers around the world. The result was the first Global Day of Prayer on Pentecost Sunday in 2005, drawing an estimated 200 million people.
Across the face of the earth. In 2006, and again in 2007, on Pentecost Sunday, even greater numbers of Christians gathered in almost every country on earth. The movement continues to spread and to deepen, packing large stadiums, filling homes with small groups, spilling out into open squares of small villages, surging around the clock and uniting many churches in prayer for Christ’s greater glory and the blessing of all nations. On May 11, 2008, Christians will again gather to pray and repent with sincere hearts and united hopes.
After Jesus was received into heaven, His first followers gathered in an upstairs room to do as Jesus had told them: to wait for “what the Father had promised.” They were praying for more than personal spiritual enrichment. Receiving God’s Spirit was just the beginning of all that God would do in order to finish everything He promised for the entire world.
Hope-filled passion for God’s promises. As we listen to what poured out from these people in the days that followed Pentecost, we can get an idea of how they prayed during those ten days. They prayed in fervent, hope-filled passion for God to fulfill His promises all over the earth. Their prayers sprang from the written Word of God. Christ’s teaching about God’s kingdom had ignited their hope for the advance of Christ’s love and power among all peoples.
Praying onward—toward greater things beyond Pentecost. As amazed as they were on Pentecost, the Acts account says they kept up patterns of persistent praying after Pentecost. If they were with us today, they would likely be praying for God to pour out His Spirit and to use his people in even greater ways.