ARTICLE – When we cry out to God, he answers

The Brooklyn Tabernacle Evangelical church is now one of the largest Christian communities in New York City. But this was not always the case. When Jim Cymbala began his pastorate there in the early 1970s, it had only about 30 members and the church was dying.  Furthermore, he became seriously ill. With no health and no money, he said to God, “I don’t know what to do. Some say we need a vision, others say we need small groups, and others say we need a Sunday school. But Lord, if you don’t act soon, we won’t have a church at all (…) what should I do?”

He then received a deep conviction, like a divine assurance: If he had the members of his church beg God, He would assist him in his preaching, take care of the finances and send more people than their church could hold. He presented this inspiration to his parishioners. They agreed to hold many prayer meetings and God began to fulfill his promises. Although they started small, these prayer meetings have clearly been the spiritual engine of the church, which today has over 10,000 members. 

When pleaded with, says Jim Cymbala, God will not stand by and say, “No, I won’t help you”. It is the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the believers that triggers renewal: “When I look at what God has done over the years, I see that the heart of our ministry has been the prayer meeting. When we cry out to God, he answers…”

Pierre-Alain Giffard, Director of Pastoral Work

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