CODE BLUE PRAYER WALKS FOCUS ON LOVING HOUSTON NEIGHBORHOODS
Annually the organization Houston Code Blue for Christ hosts a special time of prayer for our city. In 2013, Code Blue partnered with Loving Houston to engage in prayers for transformation in each of the six neighborhoods identified to receive Loving Houston assistance. So, on Saturday, March 31, the evening before Easter, Brian Gowan, Code Blue Steering Committe member, reports that about 300 individuals gathered throughout 5 of the 6 Loving Houston communities for prayer.
Here is his report of the exciting ways in which God is at work through these prayers:
Approximately 300 participated in 5 Houston communities: Third Ward, Acres Homes, Fifth Ward, Denver Harbor and Sunnyside. The first hour at each "staging site" was filled with pastors, leaders and participants calling on the Name of the Lord for forgiveness and mercy for our sins of "commission" and "omission."
Deep, true repentance and personal renewal was the "key" to anything that happened of "eternal consequence" on Saturday at the Houston Code Blue for Christ prayer walk. After a time of consecration, God's people moved into the streets and neighborhood of these communities, with clear faith, love and effective, united prayer.
The spiritual hunger and receptiveness to prayer and the gospel, was very evident as dozens were prayed with to receive Jesus as Lord and Savior. Reports of miracles and healings were reported by several team leaders and participants.
One community staffed a Prayer Station across the street from a local historic high school for 4 days leading up to Saturday' united prayer event. Over 100 people (mostly students) were prayed for. When the principal of this local high school drove by this after school prayer initiative across from the high school, a big smile of affirmation and a "thumbs up" was seen. Students and local citizens responded "Why don't you provide prayer stations across from this high school every day?"
At one point in the day, a Houston Metro Bus stopped and invited a prayer team to step on the bus and pray over all who were riding the bus. This same kind of "invitation to pray" on a Metro Bus happened also, 3 years ago. The spiritual hunger and receptivity to prayer and the goodness of God was prevalent!
One pastoral couple got in their car on Saturday, and personally drove to 35 church parking lots within 2 hours and prayed for God's renewing fire and grace to be upon these congregations. The Holy Spirit opened opportunities for this couple to meet up with pastor friends in a few of the parking lots and minister to these pastors in a deep, personal way!
While one team stopped and prayed in a parking lot of a church, the pastor stepped outside to empty some garbage bags. When the team met him and offered to pray with him, for his family and congregation, the pastor was very enthused. He told the prayer team "I can't believe this is happening for me on the Eve of Easter! Praying strangers have come to support me. I am a 5 time "Survivor of Cancer", and I really need your prayers today!" After a time of prayer and anointing the pastor with oil, one of the team members handed the pastor a small smooth stone and said: "May the Lord give you great favor as you face and overcome the giants in your community."
Community stories of deep pain and brokenness were shared by many of the pastors while leading the prayer walks in these 5 communities. Those who joined the Houston Code Blue for Christ united prayer walk from outlying Houston communities were honored and blessed to walk and pray with those who have lived, loved and labored in these communities for many years. It was a great day of bringing the Body of Christ together in prayer and "on mission."
The over-riding feedback and "theme" that seemed to resonate among many who lead and participated in Saturday's Houston Code Blue for Christ United Prayer walk was: "We need to do this again, very soon!"
The Houston Code Blue for Christ Steering Committee consists of Pastor Brian Gowan, Executive Pastor Grace Church; Hope Aadam, Ministers Against Crime Liaison; Rickie Bradshaw, UBA Church Consultant.
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