At TEAM, our New Year’s resolution is always to serve you better than the year before. This year, we’ve changed our monthly prayer focus to make it even easier to use. We hope these simple requests will help you pray not only for TEAM missionaries but for every missionary you know!
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Whether they’re teaching in a school or passing out tracts, every missionary’s goal is to see the local church bloom and grow.
The church is where new believers learn how to follow Christ. It’s where lonely converts find Christian fellowship. It’s where budding evangelists learn to spread the gospel. It’s where we come together in worship, reminding each other of who our great God is.
This January, will you pray with us for church planting projects around the world?
Pray for opportunities to meet people and build relationships.
Turns out, life without a car is perfect for meeting people who need Jesus — at least, that’s what one TEAM missionary is discovering in the Middle East. After one ride, a taxi driver invited him to visit the driver’s home and meet his family!
Whether handing out Bibles, planning an event or just living life, church planters are always on the lookout for new friends who need to hear the gospel. Ask God to show them where and how they can strike up conversations and build gospel-centered relationships. Pray that new acquaintances will be open to the church planters’ message.
Pray for buildings and meeting spaces with room to grow.
Running out of room in your church is a happy problem — until neighbors start complaining about the noise and visitors are scared off by the lack of personal space. It can kill growth in even the most dynamic churches.
“You can grow to 80 percent of your seating capacity,” says Paul Davis, a 37-year TEAM church planter. “When you grow to that point, you will not grow anymore. That’s just a principle of life.”
This month, ask God to soften government officials’ hearts so they will let churches buy buildings and rent rooms. Pray for funds to buy buildings and renovate them. And while churches wait, pray for forgiving neighbors and brave visitors.
Pray that church members will love Jesus more deeply.
Last year, two unmarried couples at a TEAM-led church in France decided to give their lives fully to God — and that doing so meant they needed to get married. People change in big ways when they grow to love Jesus.
Please pray for Christians around the world to grow in love for Jesus. Pray that they will look more like him in the coming days. And pray that the change will not be lost on their friends, families and neighbors.
Pray for effective Bible studies.
Set in a home or other casual environment, Bible studies are often the bedrock of church plants. Seekers come to ask questions, new Christians find like-minded friends and maturing believers learn how to take on leadership roles.
This month, ask God to guide Bible study leaders as they teach and encourage the people in their groups. Pray that those with questions will get the answers they need. And pray for wisdom as missionaries train local believers to start new groups.
Pray for national leaders to take over church plants.
Without local leaders, a church will only last until the founding missionary retires. Without good training for local leaders, false teachings easily takes hold. That’s why missionaries count training leadership as a vital step in the church-planting process.
“As soon as we can, we try to identify through prayer … someone that we feel might be the eventual pastor to take over when we leave,” says Kathy North, whose Filipino church plant is currently looking for a local pastor.
Please ask God to provide strong leaders for church plants around the world. Pray for wisdom as missionaries train future leaders. And ask God to protect churches from false teachers, teaching them to check the Scriptures for everything they hear.
Have you experienced any of these requests in your own church? Tell us about it in the comments, and let us know how it’s helping you pray for missionary church planters.