As one of the pioneers of Canada’s current House of Prayer movement, I’ve been leading, observing, praying for, and supporting Houses of Prayer in Canada for 12 years. They come in all shapes and sizes, styles and flavours and have been steadily growing in number across the nation. This is a good thing.
But I’ve also noticed that in the last couple of months there is a fresh wind blowing on this expression of prayer. HOPs that have been trudging along are suddenly picking up the pace, ones that have settled into a bit of a rut are breaking out in new ways, and there are a whole bunch that have been waiting to be birthed that seem to be all in various stages of being launched this year. It’s wonderful to see what God is doing- and bless it.
With all this flurry of activity, it seems like it would be a good time to ponder what has worked over the last 12 years, (since Canada’s first HOP), not so much what style or format of HOP is the best- but what are the elements that are present in Houses of Prayer that thrive. Why not learn from other Canadian HOPs regardless if they are styled after the classic IHOP model or venturing out with a totally new concept. If we are going to build, let’s plan to be successful.
So I did some thinking, and came up with a list of what I have seen as the common elements in Houses of Prayer that are thriving. While it’s not meant to be an exhaustive list, I think it’s a great place to start and for those that are involved in the HOP movement, (or would like to be), it could well be a bit of a check list.