Christian Business Professionals in the Prayer Room
My church has a prayer room – and it isn’t weird.
Ten years ago prayer rooms in the American church were a token of the charismatic body, used by the spirit-filled outliers of the Christian church. They were foreign, intimidating, and often received with a dose of skepticism. But fast forward to today and the bell-curve has caught up with the outliers. What was once strange and even taboo is not just mainstream, but ground zero for a new generation of Christian business professionals and entrepreneurs.
Looking across the prayer room at Destiny Church in St Louis, I see a diverse landscape. Children are singing instead of playing video games. Teenagers are on their knees talking to God instead of on their phones talking to their friends. An older woman is praying fervently – something I imagine she has been doing for a long time. More men and women, of all ages, are scattered throughout the sanctuary while the worship team plays and prays up front. Then there are the human outliers – the people you’d never expect to see: the CEO’s and entrepreneurs.
I used to think the prayer room was for the “weird” Christians – the ones who didn’t understand me and the ones who participated in a reality that looks much different than mine. Business people don’t go to the prayer room, I thought. But I was wrong. They do, and they are finding treasures in the prayer room that you’ll never find anywhere else. I’m discovering, as many others before me have, that the prayer room is an essential ingredient to any man or woman’s career or business venture.
Now to be honest, I’m pretty bad at praying. I often sit in the prayer room for a long time just trying to discipline my mind and prevent it from wandering to things like baseball (go Cardinals!), work, and what I’m doing this weekend. When I do get to praying, I don’t really know what to say. Lasting more than two minutes is a challenge. But what I’m discovering is that I don’t have to always be praying. Sometimes I can just sit and soak in the presence of God – and it is then that I really start to understand why the entrepreneurs and CEO’s are investing their valuable time in the prayer room.
My mind races when I’m in the prayer room. It feels like God is downloading more wisdom, ideas, and inspiration than I can keep up with. Now I try and keep a pen and paper or laptop on hand just so I don’t forget all the good stuff God bestowing upon me. All my good ideas come from the prayer room and it is therefore hard to ignore where my strength comes from.
In the prayer room I realize how meaningless I really am. Here I recognize where my strength comes from and what life would look like without God’s favor. The prayer room expands my perspective and helps me understand things from God’s point of view. Plugging in to my source and strength, even in silence, is proving to be the most valuable part of my career. Since I’ve started going to the prayer room more regularly (once a week), I’ve gone from a sailor without a compass to a ship with a purpose. My work is more purposeful, impactful, and valuable.
The prayer room can and does feel weird at first. And not all prayer rooms are created equal. What I love about my church is that we’ve made a commitment not to copy someone else’s prayer movement, but to simply be a church that prays. It isn’t weird – it just feels that way because I haven’t practiced it enough. If you haven’t been to the prayer room before (or in a long time), today I want to challenge you to find one. As a Christian business professional or entrepreneur you’ll quickly find that God is one who is hungry to download wisdom and inspiration into the marketplace through you. He has a steady stream of gifts to offer that you won’t be able to discover except in persistent pursuit of His presence through that purposeful holy place – the prayer room.
You never know what is waiting for you in God’s presence. It might just be that next big idea, an answer to a problem you’ve been trying to solve for a long time, or a simple word of wisdom. But it also might be something even greater – an intimate encounter with your creator. Don’t rob yourself of something great. Don’t be afraid of the prayer room. Discover for yourself how God is using the prayer room today to inspire, encourage, and strengthen Christian business professionals and entrepreneurs across the world.
Photo Credit: Texas Governor Rich Perry (via Flickr, Creative Commons)