In Numbers, the Israelites finally make it through the desert and up to the border of Canaan. When they reach the border, God sends out a group of men to go, to scout out and survey the land ahead and bring back a report. The men, including Joshua and Caleb, do exactly this; they follow God’s leading to explore and discover the land that would soon be theirs. Now, upon return, not only do they tell the rest of the Israelites about the fearsome nature of their enemies, the struggles that they will soon face, they also bring back evidence of the blessings and promises that God is about to fulfil. Here the Israelites could see a snapshot of the future, a glimpse of how God would fulfil his promises to them and, most importantly, an understanding of the two ways that God would be glorified through the coming years.
Similarly, when we prayer walk, we are placing ourselves into the situation in which we expect to see God move. We see the reality of the situation we are in, the reality of the change we want to see, and this focuses our prayers, grounding us in the needs of our communities. We cannot be detached when walking through the area we are desperate to see restored. Our presence in these places teaches us two things. First of all, we see how God will be glorified through the blessings that He will provide, the breakthroughs He will accomplish and the souls He will redeem. We also see how God will be glorified through the obstacles that will have to be overcome, the challenges that will have to be met, the tasks that we are no good for and have no ability to perform. We are reminded of our hope for the area and our hope in our Saviour
At CCM we love to prayer walk, as individuals or groups. Wherever we go in the city we see the incredible promise of what God could do and hear amazing stories of what He’s already done, bringing real transformation to real people. However we also see a huge level of need. Whether that’s homelessness, chronic drug and alcohol use, domestic problems or crippling idolatry, we are surrounded by situations we are desperate to see God affect and change. One of our responses to this is to prayer walk round campuses, estates, the City Centre, anywhere we feel the call of the Holy Spirit directing us to.
Prayer walking has the effect of directing and focusing our prayers towards the real needs of the community. This has in turn shows us how God will glorify himself in the future (and indeed, how he already is), through opening our eyes to the blessings that God will provide and the obstacles he will overcome.