They are positioned at arms length from one another – watching and alert – with their weapons in hand. They rest in shifts. They cover for one another as they eat. They are frequently shot at and attacked. It is far from a life of ease and comfort. Their mission is to hold the sacred ground they have been given, and they would rather die than quit.
They are the Watchers.
Before they lie down to sleep, they must make sure the ground is secured for the night. The Night Watch has just come up to report for duty. They are fewer in numbers for a variety of reasons. Some have jobs. Some have families. Many do not have the physical capacity to live as though day is night and night is day. These are the elite. Though they are few in number, they excel in dedication, sacrifice and determination. Many of us are not even aware of the debt we owe them.
I have just described to you the intercessors who daily stand in the place of prayer every day, 24 hours a day, at the Salem House of Prayer.
This is a cry for help. This is a plea for additional soldiers.
This is the captain of one platoon writing to his fellow companions in battle, to come and send reinforcements so the line can be held a little longer. We are in desperate need of intercessors for the Night Watch. Let me explain why.
Imagine that line again. The enemy forces always seek out the part of the line that has the fewest soldiers, or where they are the most spread out. For this line, it is the night watch. We currently have three people who are covering 18-25 prayer shifts a week at night. They have time and time again come under serious assault. One of these brothers had a rare stone in his appendix suddenly appear and after months of inability to properly diagnose it, finally had it surgically removed. This has left him susceptible to various afflictions, and he is still trying to recover…all while he is still praying.
Another young lady again had abdominal pains that the doctors could not seem to understand. She was just recently told that she had a cyst that ruptured, and now she is unable to stand at her watch while she is recovering. This leaves just one brand new recruit who has come with fresh passion to help – to come and stand with the recovering brother in the night watch. These are real people who are making real sacrifices because they believe in the extreme value and the nobility of night and day prayer.
They believe, as many of you do, that Salem must have a “corporate altar” of unceasing prayer if we are to truly expect to have a habitation of the Lords presence. That alone will transform our cities. They believe it so much they are laying down their lives for it.
Let me make it clear what we are asking you for:
We are asking you to come and sign up for daily or weekly prayer: specifically between the hours of 12 a.m. to 6 a.m. We need pray-ers. We appreciate all the wonderful e-mails. We greatly value all the words of encouragement and the pats on the back that have over and over kept us going. But now we need you. We need your human body in the prayer room, coming and praying on a predictable schedule. We need you to literally sign up for prayer.
Our troops are thin. They are tired and weary, but they are more determined than ever. With respect I ask you, please do not call or write us to say that we simply need to quit. You will not be doing us any favors. But please do call or write to say you can come and pray.
We love you.
We need you.
We appeal to you.
If you absolutely cannot come, then please pray that others will.