North American Youth Congress, Thursday
The Greatest Opportunity on Earth
The second day of North American Youth congress kicked off with a jump start session led by Lj Harry followed by split sessions with Chantry Dean(Teen), Matthew Johnson(Hyphen), Chadwick Craft (Youth Workers), and Aaron Soto (Young Ministers).
Following the split sessions, Bro. Tom Ellis preached from the well-known passage in Mark 11:15-17, where scripture records Jesus’ frustration with those treating the temple as a marketplace. The attendants of NAYC were reminded of the timeless importance of the reason for the temple and one of the most important callings the church will ever have—prayer. The temple is to be called a house of prayer and in Mark 11, the people had made it a den of thieves.
The audience Jesus was speaking to was guilty of casually walking into the temple, buying their sacrifice there and then bringing it to the altar for worship. Bro. Ellis reminded us, “It is not sacrifice if I don’t bring it myself.” We don’t want to become a culture where worship is simply convenient. We cannot tolerate a lack of sacrificial praise, and a walk with God for the sake of checking it off a list. The commands of the Lord are essential, not optional.
We were urged by Bro. Ellis, “Convenient substitutes for prayer will destroy your relationship with God. We cannot purchase a passion for souls on Amazon. A prayerless church is a powerless church.” There are things that only come by talking with the Lord daily, there is no replacement for that. There must be an emptying out of ourselves to make room for what really matters. What worked for those who have gone before is the only thing that will work for this generation and those to follow.
Bro. Ellis reminded the congregation, “The next great revival in a city will come through the prevailing power of prayer. It won’t come through social media. It won’t come through marketing. It won’t come through professionalism. It won’t come through skill. All those things help support a great and growing church, but the real impact comes through prayer. It doesn’t have to be a pastor or a pastor’s wife. It can come through a praying 12 or 13 year old who shuts themselves always in prayer.”
If we want a “This is That” moment we are going to have to have a prayer moment. Having a life of prayer is one of the only things you will do that will outlive you. It is the greatest opportunity on earth.