Sabbath School Revival Through Much Prayer
By Ramon Canals
As we confront the unprecedented reality of the coronavirus pandemic, the Holy Spirit is urging us to a greater experience in prayer. The 100 Days of Prayer initiated by the General Conference (GC) Revival and Reformation Committee this past spring gave us that opportunity. In response to this compelling call to prayer, the GC Sabbath School and Personal Ministries (SSPM) Department hosted a weekly world-wide prayer session via Zoom every Wednesday at 7:00 a.m.
We invited all SSPM leaders at all levels of the Church to participate. The results were amazing. As our local churches struggled to find ways to connect and to continue to worship and study together, we got together in prayer. We encouraged each other to persevere and remain faithful as we united in prayer for our Sabbath Schools and our personal-ministry objectives worldwide.
We prayed that God would open doors for our members to reach out in new and creative ways to continue the mission. We united in prayer for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. We also spent time praying for personal transformation and for God to sanctify us through His perfect love so that we become more like Jesus.
There is so much God wants to do in response to our prayers. He is just waiting for us to ask. That is why I believe that prayer should be our first work. In this unusual time of social distancing, Christ’s body must press together, united in prayer, to seek His strength and power.
As a result of spending 100 days in prayer, some of the Sabbath School leaders said, “Why should we stop meeting after the 100 days of prayer? Why not continue meeting every week?”
After discussing this idea with the leadership, we decided to get together every first Wednesday of the month for one hour to pray. This initiative has now become part of our strategic plan, praise the Lord!
Another positive result of this prayer time is that some divisions have now begun their own SSPM prayer sessions. This is producing a new emphasis on prayer as an instrument of God for the salvation of souls.
One SSPM leader from the South American Division recently shared that they have begun a prayer ministry called "Pray to Save." The plan is simple. The Sabbath School leaders ask every member to write the names of five people they want to see in heaven on a 3x5 card. Once they do that, they gather together to pray for those names earnestly. With this simple but effective plan, they have gathered more than 40,000 names for which they are praying. Some of these people have been contacted, and some are coming to church. Others are now involved in Bible studies, and others who have left the Church are now returning to Church.
These testimonies are proof that intercessory prayer is powerful. This is why Ellen G. White says, "Through much prayer, you must labor for souls, for this is the only method by which you can reach hearts.” (Evangelism, p. 341).
Brothers and sisters, now is the time. Let us pray.
Ramon Canals is Sabbath School and Personal Ministries Director for the General Conference.
World Church Prayer Requests
November 6 - 12, 2020
• Pray that God will shelter His people from the destruction being caused by storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, fires and drought. We see these natural disasters increasing on every side.
• Please pray for church members in Nigeria caught up in or affected by the End Sars protest. Pray for peace for the government, and that God’s children will shine as lights for Jesus in the midst of tumultuous times.
• Pray for pastors and leaders around the world to prioritize the preaching of the Three Angels’ Messages. Now is the time to share this vital message.
• Pray for this week’s Adventist Mission unreached people group, the Hausa. The Hausa is the largest ethnic group in West Africa. Only 0.1% know Jesus. We invite you to pray that many in this group of over 30 million will accept Jesus as their Savior. Your prayers make a difference in global mission!