Chris Schofield is a student of revivals, awakenings and and great movements of God throughout history, and he says there’s a common thread that unites all of them.
“Every awakening has started with God’s people recognizing their desperate need for Him and crying out to Him in heartfelt prayer,” says Schofield, who serves as director of the Office of Prayer for Evangelization and Spiritual Awakening with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSC).
Schofield, the Office of Prayer strategy team and other state convention leaders are urging fellow Baptists to join together at this year’s BSC annual meeting on Nov. 6-7 at the Joseph H. Koury Convention Center in Greensboro and cry out for God to move in our state, nation and world.
On Tuesday, Nov. 7, the entire evening session will be devoted to a time of dedicated prayer for revival and spiritual awakening as part of the “Broken Before the Throne” prayer gathering.
The prayer gathering aligns with the annual meeting’s theme of “Return to Me,” based on Zechariah 1:3.
More information about annual meeting and the prayer gathering is available at ncannualmeeting.org.
“We’ve got to return to Him, and the first element of that is being broken over our sin before His throne,” Schofield said.
While citing reports of spiritual apathy, declining church health, fewer conversions, as well as cultural, economic, political and social unrest, Schofield says he’s never seen a time in recent history where there has been a more desperate need for God to send revival to the church. He said the prayer gathering at annual meeting is an opportunity for God’s people to unite and humble themselves in brokenness, repentance and one-accord prayer. It will be a time to seek the Lord and call upon Him to move in a mighty and powerful way.
“We need revival in the church and spiritual awakening in the culture,” Schofield said. “This prayer gathering is a call for God’s people to pray and seek the Lord. It’s an opportunity to acknowledge and confess to God that He is our only hope.”
Acts 3:19 will serve as a guiding verse for the prayer gathering. It reads, “Therefore, repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (NASB).
The prayer gathering will include seasons of worship intertwined with scripture readings, testimonies and directed seasons of individual and united prayer.
“Our prayer is that the gathering will be an environment where God’s people can seek His face, turn from their wicked ways, pray and listen to the Lord,” Schofield said. “We are not having a designated speaker that night, except for the Lord.”
N.C. Baptists can prepare their hearts for worship and prayer leading up to annual meeting with a 30-day devotional prayer guide that will be available by early fall.
The devotional will correspond with the annual meeting theme of “Return to Me” taken from Zechariah 1:1-6.
The prayer guide will feature 30 days’ worth of daily devotions, prayer points and reflection questions, and it is intended for use during the month of October.
Each N.C. Baptist church will receive one complimentary printed prayer guide, with additional copies available for purchase.
A free electronic version and other related resources will be available for download at prayfor30days.org.
“We are also calling on pastors and churches to devote a portion of their worship service to prayer for revival and spiritual awakening on Sunday, Nov. 5, leading up to annual meeting and the Tuesday evening prayer gathering,” Schofield said.
Schofield said he hopes the prayer gathering will encourage and challenge pastors and churches to unite and seek the Lord through extraordinary prayer.
“I do think God wants to send revival and spiritual awakening to His church and to America” Schofield said. “But it must start with my broken heart and my desperate prayer.”