The Assemblies of God annual Week of Prayer will begin on the first day of the new year, Jan. 1, and run through Jan. 7. The 2023 theme, “Awakening,” powerfully connects history, great spiritual awakenings, and prayer as throughout history, one thing has always accompanied great spiritual awakenings — fervent prayer.
“We’ll never see an awakening in our churches or a change in our culture without fervent prayer,” says AG General Superintendent Doug Clay. “The state of our culture really demands an awakening.”
This year, Acts 4:31 is the overarching reference verse. Each day will have its own theme and will include a video interview of a leader who can personally connect the theme with what God is prepared to do and is doing in AG congregations today.
The 2023 themes are: Consistency, Compassion, Signs and Wonders, United Prayer, Global Connection, Intercession and Evangelism, and Passing Revival to the Next Generation. Videos featuring Rick DuBose, Hal Donaldson, John Lindell, Al Toledo, John Easter, Choco De Jesús, and David and Beth Grant with Jennifer Barratt are available to use as well.
Joe Oden, the national director of Prayer and Evangelism for the Assemblies of God, developed this year’s Week of Prayer intensive. He observes how in the Book of Judges there’s a strong resemblance to the United States today.
Oden says, “The Book of Judges ends with this statement, ‘. . . everyone did what was right in their own eyes . . .’ they were being led by their flesh and the nation was in disarray.”
However, in the midst of the spiritual chaos of that era, Oden notes, in walks Hannah, who threw herself on the altar of prayer, fervently asking God for a son. God answered her tearful prayer and the future prophet Samuel was born — a prophet who was used, among many other miracles, to anoint a boy, David, as king, through whose line Christ would one day enter the world. What would have happened had Hannah not prayed with such fervency?
“I’m not so concerned about unanswered prayers, that’s God’s responsibility,” Clays says, “but I am concerned about unoffered prayers.”
Clay joins Oden in calling for congregations and ministers to lean into the Week of Prayer.
“I pray,” Clay says, “that this week we will offer up prayers and cries and petitions and intercessions so that 2023 may be the greatest spiritual awakening that we’ve ever seen in our church’s history.”