I had the opportunity to minister with Pastor Ken Hutcherson (Antioch Bible Church) and Pastor Shahram Hadian (Truth in Love Project) regarding taking a stand for marriage in our state. It was a powerful time of truth combined with prayer and a challenge for the Church to arise. This even was hosted Selah Covenant Church and MC'd by Michele Stroble.
After the event Michele shared with me an article she had just written for the Christian Community News which serves Central Washington. It was an article that shared the testimony of how this group in Yakima spearhead by Linda Isaella mobilized 24/7 prayer in their community targeting among other things CRIME.
They are setting an EXCELLENT example of what it takes to occupy the Mountain of the Lord's House of Prayer for All Nations (Isa. 2:2, Mic. 4:1-2, and Isa. 56:7) in a city and a region.
This was a very exciting testimony to me for Linda worked with me in 2006 and 2007 and used Operation Rolling Thunder to help mobilize 24/7 prayer connecting the National Day of Prayer to the Global Day of Prayer. 2007 was the year that we harnessed the momentum from the National and Global Days of Prayer and used ORT to launch 24/7 prayer over the state of Washington. We had at least one church praying 24/7 every day of the year. In January 2008 the FBI reported how that crime in every major city in Washington declined (complete testimony recorded in Operation Rolling Thunder the revised edition.) Seattle reached a 38 year low while I saw a quote from the Yakima Police Chief stating crime was at decades year low and he was unsure why.
Linda Isaella and the praying churches in Yakima knew why. They had participated in the 24/7 prayer strategy that ORT introduced. Linda had another ministry that had assisted her with coordinating the 24/7 portion while she focused on the overall mobilization. They not only made an impact in their city and region but also in our state.
24/7 Prayer + Strategic Action = Lasting Results
In January 2010 I received a phone call from Linda sharing about the recent crime wave and increase in homicides. I asked the what the status was of the 24/7 and understood that over time it had ceased. As I recall, the actual outreach ministry to their city had actually increased. I was convinced that the 24/7 that invited God's abiding presence was critical to the effectiveness of outreach ministry. On January 28, 2010 I sent an email out to encourage Linda and other prayer leaders like her what I had learned about 24/7 prayer and crime. It included testimonies like:
Linda responded, took the leadership role and began to mobilize 24/7 using the pattern introduced through Operation Rolling Thunder. Two years later we see this marvelous report of how the Church in the greater Yakima area (34 congregations) are working together to lift up 24/7. The results are measurable, reproducible and glorify our Lord Jesus Christ to whom all the glory and honor belong.
I so appreciate leaders who serve as a catalyst but the truth is, it took the body of Christ in the greater Yakimar area working together long term to effect this transformation. That my friends is the kind of discipline that love inspires and wisdom utilizes.
Jesus told us to occupy till He comes. They have set an excellent example of what occupying looks like. It is a spiritual war but a spiritual war in which we gain victories which bless and serve our communities.
Since 2007 I have received 13 different reports from Churches who used ORT (click here) to mobilize their community report how crime statistics have followed the rise and fall of 24/7 in their community.