Prayer at the Gate is an idea that came out of American churches. Byron Marchant — the head of the Equippers Church Youth in NZ, has been the main one to make this idea ‘famous’ around New Zealand.
The idea is simple, but powerful: Christian youth meet together outside the gate of the school prior to school on a weekly basis to pray for the school. And that is it.
The point is all about what happens next.
- People ask what you are doing. When you tell them, leads to intrigue about your faith and why you pray.
- I’ve heard of teachers feeling a group by the road was not safe — so they were asked to pray inside the school gates, and were thus given recognition (permission?) as a group in the school. To note it, student initiatives are usually loved and supported by teachers — so long as everyone is respectful in their conduct and manner. So there is very unlikely to be a weird ‘authority’ problem with this in a school. Anyone is free to pray. Just stay respectful toward others!
- But the real thing this achieves is in what happens within the students who pray — as the result of their prayers. As we pray for others our own desire to do things to encourage and bless them grows. Students become more pro-active in engaging others in spiritual conversations as a part of this. And, as a group, the students sometimes come up with weird and wonderful ways of being a blessing to their school.
How do we change the world?
- While we can certainly do some good in our own strength
- …it goes without saying that we will accomplish more when working WITH God.
Connecting us with God is what prayer achieves — and with God, there is no limit to what few youth could achieve!