This is a great help to consistent and effective prayer.
Guidelines for Corporate Prayer
(Adapted from teaching given by Lance Lambert and Art Carlson)
- Be brief. In Matthew 6:7 Jesus says that the Gentiles suppose they will be heard for their many words. We haven`t changed much!
- Speak clearly and loudly enough to be heard. As Paul said in another context, how can we say "Amen" if we don`t know what is said.
- Pray from the heart, don`t preach. Avoid sentimentality and unnatural speech. Sometimes you can tell what group people come from by listening to them pray, because they adopt a particular style. Be honest; talk to God the way you talk to your best friend.
- Keep on the theme. Pray through one subject before introducing another. Obviously, that doesn`t mean we have to see the mountain moved into the sea before proceeding to the next subject, but we do need to give God time to speak concerning the subject in hand before moving on. When not praying aloud, quietly support the one who is. Don`t let your mind wander.
- Don`t take "pot-shots" at the devil. Jude verse 9 tells us that even the archangel Michael did not dare to condemn the devil for slander, but said, "The Lord rebuke you." Rather we are told to `resist the devil` (James 4:7) and to: `put on the full armour of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil`s schemes` (Ephesians 6:11).
- Avoid personal pronouns. When speaking for the group say "We" rather than "I". Of course, if there is doubt about agreement on an issue, that should be settled before praying on behalf of all.
- Good repetition builds the case. Some teaching would indicate that once a thing is prayed for, it is unbelief to mention it again. There is need for balance in this. To keep pleading for something which God has made clear He wants to give us can be unbelief. On the other hand, true intercession is speaking into reality that which is as yet unseen. That usually takes time and repetition. We should not assume that what "worked" on the last prayer project will work on the next. There was a different strategy for different cities as Israel took the land.
- Lay aside preconceived ideas. Die to your own imagination. Ask for fresh guidance from the Holy Spirit for this prayer time. We need to cultivate absolute dependence on the Holy Spirit.
- Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise (Psalm 100:4). Let the high praises of God be in our mouths and a two-edged sword in our hands (Psalm 149:6)