Mark Dever and Jonathan Leeman of 9 Marks talk about why churches, and Christians, fail to engage in one of the most fundamental privileges and commands we have as Christians. Dever offers helpful guidelines and models in how churches can pray and keep them organized and focused on moving from immature prayer to mature prayer. This discussion is very helpful and practical for church leaders.
From the 9 Marks website:
This Sunday, a vast majority of evangelical churches will gather for singing and preaching and reading Scripture and perhaps even a few baptisms and the Lord’s Supper. There will also be some praying.
In comparison to everything else, though, there will be just a little bit of prayer—a transition as a few musicians scurry off-stage, a quick “thank-you” to God after collecting the offerings, a prayer for God’s Spirit to work on the hearers of the sermon.
All in all, you might pray for a few minutes, almost always as a passive observer.
That’s the norm, and, on the whole, the norm is shocking, abysmal, and embarrassing. When it comes to verses like Colossians 4:2—“continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving”—our present-day churches have mostly failed.
So, what should we do about it? To answer that question, consider this interview with Mark Dever and Jonathan Leeman, in which they seek to diagnose and then address this problem of prayerlessness. We hope and, well, pray that it encourages us all toward more faithful obedience.