By Leo Park
“Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again, truly I tell you, if two of you agree on earth about anything you ask, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them.” (Matthew 18:18-20, NRSV)
These are intense days for those of us who serve within The United Methodist Church. We sense the anxiety and concern as we wait for decisions to be made at the 2020 General Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in May of this year. Yet, we have been told by Paul that we have not been given a spirit of fear, but of power, love and self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7). Paul also told us that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12).
With those truths in mind, we are convinced that now is the time to bind together in covering all our conferencing in prayer. Toward that end, the Wesleyan Covenant Association (WCA) is developing an international intercessory prayer network to cover the work of the WCA, the future of the UM Church, and the advance of the Kingdom of God through the Body of Christ.
Our prayer strategy is two-pronged. One part is to identify the spiritual powers working against the Body of Christ so we can strategically target and pray against those powers. In every place where the enemy is seeking to sow fear, anxiety, discord and lies, we want to counter with confidence, peace, cooperation and truth.
We also want to pray geographically, covering every square inch of ground on which United Methodists minister. We are seeking prayer partners in every region and conference, so we can cover every place where United Methodists serve. In my own area (the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference) we have commissioned a team of intercessors for our WCA chapter area who will receive requests from the WCA Council and engage in strategic intercession with other WCA intercessory prayer teams around the world.
It was exciting to commission this first intercessory team for our region. During a regional gathering, we made a call for intercessors who are gifted in the area of prophetic worship, intercession, and spiritual warfare, and who are willing to join and work together as a team. Twelve people said “yes” to the call during that meeting. Three others who were live streaming our event also said “yes!” From that first vision-casting meeting, the Greater New Jersey WCA Intercessory Prayer Team was officially formed.
We invite every region to develop similar teams, so we are all praying together toward God’s more perfect will for the people called Methodist.
I have been praying personally for the UM Church and the work of the WCA for some time and have been seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Because I was already engaged in the work of prayer, it seemed right to accept when I was asked to join the WCA International Intercessory Prayer Network last fall. I sensed in my spirit that the Lord has already determined what He will do in and through the UM Church. I sensed the Lord is now working through our prayers to accomplish his purposes and I want to be part of that work. I also sense that he is creating a net to catch “fish” (pastors and churches) that will come out of our current UM Church system.
And I believe that net is prayer! The WCA International Intercessory Prayer Network will be the net God uses to do his work. This net will be developed through the networking of intercessors from around the world. As we have often heard, prayer is not preparation for the work. Prayer is the work. This is why I said yes to join the prayer network, and also said yes to the call to lead it in this very important season.
Will you join me in this call? If so, pray for the passage of the legislation implementing the “Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace Through Separation,” for WCA leaders, for the work of the WCA, and for the future of the UM Church.
With the presentation of the protocol, I believe we now have a clear vision and a powerful focus for our prayers. Let us pray for the passage of the protocol’s implementing legislation so we can end the harm that we have done to one another, either intentionally or unintentionally. Pray for an end to our nearly 50 year old conflict. And brothers and sisters, pray into God’s vision for a new denomination and new beginning.
As I pray, I can see the peace, I can see the joy, I can see the hope… and I can see the Church!
The Rev. Leo Park is the pastor of Korean United Methodist Church of South Jersey in Egg Harbor City, New Jersey. You can join the WCA International Intercessory Network by clicking HERE.