Beste <<First Name>>,

At Forerunner foundation, prayer is central. In this global corona crisis, the call to prayer is also rising from the Church - in all its forms. But... what exactly is happening (is this virus from the devil, is it from God, or is it a coincidence?) and what is the best way to pray? Opinions differ quite a bit about this. 
We could elaborate what our point of view is about this global crisis and why we believe that, why certain other people believe something else, etc. But we don't. What we mainly want to do here, is make an appeal. 

Be still before God 
A call to silence our hearts before God's face and listen. The systems in which we function are shaking and we shake with them. Plans change, churches close and everything is different. In the supermarket the shelves are empty, for many small business owners their income is disappearing, elderly people are afraid to become ill and young parents are at home day after day with the task to homeschool their children. 
This makes things surface in our hearts ... The response that seems to come naturally is to fight against this. In Christian terms: ‘Let us pray against the coronavirus, that it will be gone as soon as possible and life can go back to business as usual.’ 

And though we certainly pray and certainly rise up in faith, I would like to call on you: embrace this shaking and embrace what it brings to light in your heart and life. Dare to become silent and listen at God's feet. For the things that shake are temporary, but what we can gain by listening and being obedient is eternal! 

What are you fighting for?  
Fighting isn't wrong... but let's fight for the things that really matter! Fight for authenticity and purity in your own heart and for your relationships; take this chance to go deep in God and go deep with each other... and leave Netflix off. Take this opportunity to bring your elderly neighbor groceries, to send cards with encouraging scriptures to lonely people, to make video calls to your grandmother, and to have a game night with your teens. Fight to be ready together for the time to come, to have a history in God, and to understand His voice.  

Back to the basics 
This crisis reduces life to the most essential things. Everyone is at home in their own environment. Alone or with his own family. Appointments are cancelled, activities come to a stop for the most part. This is strikingly in line with God's call of this last year to have less of a program and to build a relationship with Him and those closest to you. I believe His heart in this is for us to not resist the silence that arises, but use it as an opportunity to break down the walls around our hearts. If we have buried ourselves in hustle and bustle, dare to become silent. If your family has all been doing their own thing: embrace the extra time for relationship within the family. If we went to services together, but hardly managed to pray and worship together at home... embrace these circumstances. Stand up in faith for breakthroughs in building a personal deep life in God and restoring the family altar! 

What is revealed in your heart? 
Do you feel lonely, afraid, overwhelmed or like you are failing? Do you have parenting challenges that suddenly become magnified or are you fearful about your finances and uncertain future? Or maybe you realize that you don't know exactly what God is doing and what He expects of you right now? 

Take time to recognize what is happening in your heart and hear from God how He wants to use this situation to cleanse you through fire. So that in us, will be the same mindset as that of Jesus Christ. To be overflowing with the fruits of the Spirit in difficult times, give away more in times of shortage and dare to admit our weakness and lean into His power. 

Embrace the silence 
When social life stagnates and church programs stagnate ... embrace the silence. Don’t be afraid to be still on the inside as well. Look at the state of your own heart and come before God in humility. Take time to listen to what He wants to say to you in this. If you've ever had the time, it's now... now that so many appointments are canceled. Be brave enough not to fill that time with new activities, entertainment, or hourly news readings. Will you allow God to fill this time, as you are still before Him? 

 Our hope is in an eternal, unshakable Kingdom 
Through these circumstances, I pray that our hope will no longer be in our comfortable lives and in what feels natural and familiar. Let our hope be that this unshakable Kingdom will break through! What do we gain by praying fervently that the crisis will soon be over? Because if the situation is restored to the way it was, will everything be okay again? No, it won't. Then the world will still be filled with injustice and pain. Let's pray for a real, long term solution. 
Yes, we pray for healing! Yes, we pray for provision! Yes, we pray for protection and recovery! But if God answers our prayer for this, it is meant to strengthen the message of the gospel. The healing and providence are a 'down payment' and proof of His kingdom to come. Where no one is sick, sad or lonely. More importantly: where He Himself is present and His righteousness and love reigns.  
If this is the beginning of the contractions that will become more intense and eventually produce a completely new kingdom, a new century of righteousness... then let us embrace the contractions and not fight against them. Let us have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church. 

Watchful and wise 
Let us be watchful and wise and ensure that our hearts and lives are prepared for the time to come. Without fear, but with great joy that our King, our Bridegroom is coming! How good and kind of God, He is now giving us an opportunity to honestly see whether or not we are ready for the time to come. In our hearts, in the things in which we are rooted (what makes you feel secure? You suddenly see that more clearly when those things start to shake!) and also in our response to God and the people around us.  
Everything that is shaking now, we will have to let go off eventually. Our health, our comfort, our financial security and even our family’s safety. Let us rise up in love, without fear, and with faith... Standing up to build with materials that are eternal... in ‘joyful expectation’ and in hope of the Day of the Lord. 

What then shall we pray? 
Prayer is our strongest response always. In addition to the 'listening prayer' we have encouraged you to do, we want to pray as the Bible teaches us. As we see in Ephesians 1:17-18 where Paul prays for the church: 
‘I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints.’ 
Think about it … how glorious would it be if this situation resulted in the true knowledge of Jesus Christ in His church. A worldwide Bride of Christ who isn’t confused about what is happening in the world, but who truly and deeply knows her Beloved One. Knowing Jesus' word, knowing His heart, knowing His plans and unmistakably understanding His voice (also in these types of situations). 

We end with the prayer YouVersion has sent out: 
God, You alone are worthy of honor, glory, and praise. With You we can overcome every storm, including Covid-19. Right now, we are asking You to: 

  • Heal those who are sick and protect those who are not.
  • Give our leaders extra wisdom as they navigate this pandemic and economic uncertainty. 
  • Strengthen Your global Church. Reveal to us how we can partner together to reach the needs of those around us. 
  • Calm our fears. Fill us with Your hope, joy, and peace as we continue to trust in You. 
  • Use this pandemic to pave the way for spiritual renewal. We want Your glory, power, and healing to be on display. 

Come Lord Jesus, come!   

What is Forerunner?
We exist to raise up prayer and justice in the nations. We partner together with friends, organizations, and ministries around the globe to see this vision realized.

Contact Forerunner Foundation
Website:    www.forerunner.info
Adres:       Assumburg 119, 3328 BD Dordrecht
Mail:          info@forerunner.info
Giften:      IBAN: NL60INGB0005358287
                    BIC: INGBNL2A 
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