71,000 Attend All-Night Prayer Meeting

Just over a year ago, underneath the radar of media and public interest, something began in Egypt. As a result, 2011 will be remembered for the unprecedented political shift in at least twelve nations. The entire Arab world will never be the same.

Contrary to media images, the change did not begin with mass revolt in the streets. Before the expression of social reform penetrated Facebook and Twitter, the experience of spiritual revival penetrated the hearts of God’s people.

The Real Story Is Being Told
We are largely uninformed of the prayer and fasting that preceded the seismic cultural shift in Egypt. And of the subsequent growth of the nation’s evangelical prayer movement. Yet, I believe God wants to use the example of one of the oldest nations on earth as a pattern for spiritual change right here in America.

Before There Was Change
What history must not lose, and Christians in America must not miss, is that evangelicals in Egypt united together in crying out to the Lord before there was real change. They spent the last forty days of 2010 as one voice offering one cry for spiritual awakening. You won’t convince them anything else was as catalytic to change as those forty days of fasting.

Pleading with America
And now, a leading evangelical pastor in Egypt is imploring Christians in America to do the same. Pastor Sameh Maurice, who called and led the movement for a 40-day fast at the end of 2010, shared the following when told of how Awaken Us is calling the church in America to use their model:

I want to challenge the church in the States. Please, this is the time to humble yourself. To come on your knees and cry out, “Lord, Lord, come back!” You have many revivals in the past. Please, I urge the church in the States to humble yourself, humble yourself before the Lord. And you will see a revival. It has happened often in your short history. You have thousands of churches and millions of believers. You have capacity and finances. But don’t depend on your finances and your capacity as a church. It is a time to humble yourself and depend 100% on God Himself. And in fasting and in praying, we express that kind of humility as we acknowledge no power in ourselves. You still have a chance. For your sake and for the sake of the Kingdom worldwide, please, please do it.

71,000 Attend All-Night Prayer Meeting
Now, twelve months later, church leaders in Egypt decided to call a special all-night prayer meeting. They realize cultural revolutions can make soil more fertile for spiritual transformation. This time they decided to host it at the “church at the garbage dump.” Believing in the power of prayer emanating from last year’s 40-day fast, 71,000 people came to pray on 11-11-11.

Father Simon, a Coptic Christian, is the pastor who began this church when he was a garbage collector. The church now meets in seven different caves to accommodate the 30,000 weekly attendees. The brief time I spent on my knees by myself in the cave auditorium several years ago was a defining moment of surrender in my life. I never would have anticipated the “cave church” in the garbage dump of Cairo becoming the largest church in the Middle East. And now, this month, it was the largest all-night prayer gathering I have ever become aware of.  

Begin Today 
Many ministries and churches who are responding to Pastor Maurice's plea are extending the invitation via AwakenUs. They are calling the church of America to unify together in fasting and prayer through December 31, 2011, for revival in the Church and spiritual awakening in our land. You can pick one day, or one day every week, or even a week or more to fast and pray and cry out to God for His grace and mercy on us and the U.S.

How about it? Will you join with thousands of others in our nation?

Did you discover God’s Truth today?

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About the Author

Byron Paulus

Byron Paulus

Byron Paulus is the President and Executive Director of Life Action Ministries, the parent ministry of Revive Our Hearts. Byron's three decades of experience in leadership with America's largest revival ministry, and his vision to see God send another spiritual awakening to our nation, have given him an opportunity to influence thousands through his various speaking, writing, and leadership endeavors. Byron and his wife, Sue, were married in 1973 and have raised three children, all of whom are active in ministry.