"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:" 1 Peter 3:15 (KJV)
Conveying the Ministry of Prayer to Our Students
No other ministry is challenged more by Satan than the ministry of prayer. People can fake many things; they can go to church on Sundays, they can read Christian Books, they can enjoy Bible Studies, they can talk the Christian talk and they can even learn how to sound good praying publicly. However, we can never fake our intimate relationship with God in our secret places.
As we see in the life of Jesus, our ultimate example, everything He did had its foundation in prayer. Jesus, days before His death, asked the disciples, Can you not pray one hour? (Matthew 26:40) Eve on the cross, Christ kept His relationship with the Father through prayer and even interceded for others.
We start every class in prayer. Also at the end of the physical aspect of our classes we do small devotionals and, at times, we pray for each one of our students as we play anointed worship music. Through our devotionals, we are constantly encouraging our students to develop their own relationship with Christ.
Because our classes are held outside of the traditional church, the focus becomes salvation more than prayer, which can be challenging for those who have not grown up in a Christian home environment. The only time some of our students hear the Word is in our school.
I often tell my students that jogging is to the athlete, as prayer is to the Christian, it is indeed the key exercise of our faith. We teach the Word, we teach sound doctrine, and we trust that the Word will not return void.
If I can successfully encourage my students to develop a relationship with God through to the study of His Word and prayer, then the student will have attained something much more valuable than any black belt or degree.