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Let's Focus on Strategic Towns

by Mike O'Rear, President, GMI

thumbnail Praying Through The Window IV map The focus of the Praying Through The Window IV campaign is "Strategic Towns." Previous global prayer efforts focused on the 10/40 Window, whether countries, cities or peoples. This year's target is places.

Why places? Consider what the Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Thessalonica, a Strategic Town of his day: "The Lord's message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia--your faith in God has become known everywhere" (1 Thess. 1:8). Thessalonica was a busy sea port of its day, the capital of its province Macedonia, with a population numbering 200,000. In this passage, the Apostle notes how the early believers welcomed the gospel and became a model of faith to both those in and beyond their region.

10/40 Window In this decade of harvest the Holy Spirit has been leading the church to pray with greater power and focus. During October of '93 the target was the 62 nations of the 10/40 Window. In '95, prayer focused on the 100 Gateway Cities. In '97, millions prayed for 1,739 significant unreached peoples, grouped in 130 People Clusters.

Now in October '99 the focus will be on some 3,900 Strategic Towns. These are the largest cities within a nation, that if reached for Christ like Thessalonica, could potentially influence up to a million people in their county, province or state. During October '99, both home-based intercessors and prayer journey teams will minister specifically to these Strategic Towns.

Whereas an unreached people often shares a common heritage, Strategic Towns often share a common "sense of place." Through Christ, this shared landscape and its shared mindscape can become a highway to heaven. So the prophetic call to Strategic Towns is the same cry of Isaiah for the Holy City, "Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God" (Isa. 40:3).

detail Using white dots of various magnitude, the "Light the Window" Prayer Map depicts the Strategic Towns of the 10/40 Window. Up to 3,900 Strategic Towns light up this map, ranging in population from 10 thousand to 30 million people. To fuel your prayers, maps of each Strategic Town, plus profiles and prayer points can be found on the "Light the Window" CD produced by AD2000 and Beyond.

Another visual marker on the "Light the Window" Prayer Map are the 63 countries of the 10/40 Window. Each day during the campaign the Prayer Calendar will feature at least two of these countries.

AD 2000 United Prayer Track leader, Dr. C. Peter Wagner writes: "This is by far the most exciting and potentially the most effective prayer initiative we have ever undertaken."

Global Mapping International is proud to be the publisher of the "Light the Window" Prayer Map. We hope you will find it to be an inspiring tool you can practically use to pray for the world's towns to become lighthouses of the gospel.

Mike O'Rear is the president of Global Mapping International and a Senior Associate for Information Technology with the Lausanne movement. O'Rear

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URL: http://www.gmi.org/pttw4/towns.htm
Revised: July 1, 1999