The prophet Isaiah says, in chapter 60:1-3, “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and His Glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.” (NIV)
Against the background of millions of people going about business as usual, multi-apartment buildings stretching into the heavens, and city lights that never go out, (except under extreme events such as the recent Hurricane Sandy), the call for evangelizing New York City in 2013 has captured our attention. According to Ellen White, “Every day the probation of some is closing. Every hour some are passing beyond the reach of mercy”—Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 140. In Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 466, the servant of the Lord continues, “Every day we have been associating with men and women who are judgment bound. Each day may have been the dividing line to some soul; someone may have made the decision which will determine his future destiny. What has been our influence over these fellow travelers? What efforts have we put forth to bring them to Christ?”
In just a few months, the NY13 Revelation of Hope series, comprising more than 420 evangelistic sites, will take place across Metropolitan New York. What a wonderful opportunity to let the light of God’s glory shine through us into this place of great opportunity and yet great spiritual darkness. Now you may say, “But I do not live in that area, neither can I go to that area.” As of today, you can be a part of this big evangelistic thrust right where you are. We recognize public evangelism is public warfare against the forces of Satan and his kingdom (Ephesians 6:12). As such, we expect some pushback, some serious efforts to minimize or even attempts to prevent the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus (Matthew 24:14; 28:19, 20). Thank God we have a plan and a strategy to ensure success.
Our big plan of faith and action is to saturate these meetings with our continuous prayers, because prayer is the foundation stone for evangelistic success. “There is nothing that Satan fears so much as that the people of God shall clear the way by removing every hindrance, so that the Lord can pour out His Spirit. . . . If Satan had his way, there would never be another awakening, great or small, to the end of time. But we are not ignorant of his devices. . . . When the way is prepared for the Spirit of God the blessing will come”—Selected Messages, bk. 1, p. 124.
NY13 prayer ministries invites you to be a part of the 3000-plus individuals across the Atlantic and Columbia unions, who will pray in groups of 125 or more individuals on the hour, every hour, around the clock beginning April 1 through October 31 for the NY13 Revelation of Hope evangelistic meetings.
As a matter of fact, we can begin right now as a part of the preparation for NY13, praying for the evangelists and the congregations involved in these meetings. The wonderful thing about prayer is that it can happen where you are, yet impact individuals and programs many miles away.
We need you to be a committed praying partner and intercessor. May the passion of Jesus for the large cities of the world become ours, and may the glory of the Lord be seen and experienced by all until He comes.
Carlyle C. Simmons is the Atlantic Union Conference executive secretary and director of the Health Ministries, Human Relations, and Prayer Ministries departments.