Mike Bickle doesn't take prayer lightly. Not that anyone else who prays does either, but for the sheep in Pastor Bickle's flock, it's something else. It's a "job description." According to an article in Christian publishing titan Steve Strang's Charisma Magazine -- Strang is also the publisher of Texas madcase megapastor John Hagee's books -- Bickle, founder of the International House of Prayer (IHOP) "has spent the last 10 years developing a 'culture of prayer,' with some 1,500 full-time committing to 12, two-hour prayer times each week. 'It's part of people's job descriptions,' Bickle said. 'We tell them, "You are intercessory missionaries; you're not just [employees]." Part of their task is to be in the prayer room crying out for justice.'" Sounds more like the cruel pep talk of a Wal-Mart deputy manager than someone to reach out to for inspiration, but it appears that at least 1,500 people think otherwise.
10 straight years. Now it's time to mark -- not "celebrate," that's a bit over the top for this crowd -- this decade of constant praying with prayer.
In case you can't make it in person yet want to pray along, put your hands together and hold them there -- the marking will broadcast live, starting tonight Sept. 17, and continue for four consecutive days. Continuity is the IHOP way.
Bat-shit crazy quotes from Bickle meant to tempt people to watch the anniversary service from the Charisma article below:
- At the 10-year mark, we're making a commitment by the grace of God to combine 24-hour prayers of justice with 24-hour works of justice until the Lord returns."
- The risk is huge, and ... the reason we're taking it on is, biblically, we're on the earth for it," he said. "And the Spirit is pressing us. The Lord is saying over and over, it is now time to be far more aggressive. ... Now He's got His finger on us. He's upped the intensity of it. And our people really want to. We've talked about it for years, and we have no option but to do it."
- "We think very strongly from the Word and the Spirit that it's great trouble and great victory -- both of them are emerging at the same time," Bickle said. "It will be the greatest harvest field in America, but it will be the season of the greatest falling away from the faith, or at least from the organized church."