It is an average committee room. A square of tables dominates the center, with chairs for 15 on the perimeter.
A Prayer Room for the World
By Bill Knott
It is an average committee room. A square of tables dominates the center, with chairs for 15 on the perimeter. A second rank of tables—usually claimed by latecomers—crowds up near the windows. Light blue-gray walls are hung with tools a working group might need: a whiteboard; large tear-off poster paper; a projection screen for videos and PowerPoint presentations.
But every Wednesday morning, just at 8:15 a.m. Eastern (U.S.) time, this very average committee room in the church’s world headquarters becomes the center of an international prayer meeting convened by the Adventist World editorial team. Week by week an average of 50 prayer requests from as many as 30 different nations are read aloud, reminding all of us who gather there how aptly named this magazine truly is.
A mother from Zambia asks us to intercede for grown children no longer walking with the Lord. A college student in the Philippines facing a crucial academic exam reaches out for the support of fellow believers. A dozen poignant notes remind us of the Joblike sufferings with which faithful people wrestle: cancer; diabetes; failing eyesight; marital stresses; untimely and inexplicable tragedies.
There is no way for our staff members to pass through this weekly ritual unmoved, for the curtains that might keep us focused on our private worlds are brushed away. We become aware—sometimes painfully so—of just how broken our planet is, and just how much God’s people long for the healing of all things. We sense the natural helplessness all humans feel in the face of pain so great and problems so vast. But almost every week at least one prayer reminds the Lord—and all of us—that we are choosing to align ourselves again with the one Power in this universe who cares about justice, who heals the brokenhearted, who causes love to spring up new and fractured bones to become strong again.
And so, dear reader, know this wherever you see these words: Whether individually in response to your request, or corporately because you belong to God’s remnant, you have been prayed for today.