Prayer fuels the fifty-ninth General Conference session

By Chantal J. KlingbeilWe may be tempted to think that the General Conference session is all about getting business done, supported by powerful sermons, beautiful music, and fascinating exhibits. But nothing is farther from the truth. The session is all about coming together to reconnect with God—individually and corporately. It’s the time when we join hands as a church family and look up asking God to take control. Here we realize once again that it is only a miracle of God’s grace that holds us—of so many different languages, cultures, ages, and worldviews—together. It’s here that we realize anew our need of God.

The Prayer Room at the session, strategically placed in Room C 107 off the hall before the delegate cafeteria entrance, reminds us that “man does not live on bread alone” (Matt 4:4). Dawn Reynolds and Stanely Ponniah, under the auspices of GC Women’s Ministries, head a team of dedicated prayer warriors. Low tables, chairs, cushions, candles, and potted palms are beautifully arranged to create a quiet, peaceful area.

All day long a steady stream of people flow in to pray alone, with a volunteer, or listen for God’s voice as they quietly read their Bibles. Several of the prayer volunteers have come to this session with no other agenda but to pray.

As delegates on the floor move through nominations and the other business of the session, a group of people support them item by item in prayer. Each person voted into office is covered in prayer. According to Reynolds, people come to the Prayer Room with open hearts to be “informed, encouraged, inspired, and enlightened.” There seems to be a general longing for a deeper, fuller spiritual experience. The Prayer Ministries team is coordinating prayer seminars twice a day with invited speakers. The attendance has been so overwhelming that organizers have been forced to find a bigger venue for the seminars.

In the noise and action of the session, we can never pray too much because this church will not be moving forward by goals, plans, or good leadership, “‘but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty” (Zech. 4:6).

Chantal J. Klingbeil is a mother, author, editor, and home-school teacher.

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