These sessions may be used to construct a seminar for your area. Build your seminar by choosing the titles you want addressed.
Pastors and Leaders
Perimeters of Control: A hard-hitting presentation about the moral and spiritual condition of today’s pastors – the compromise, the moral failure rates. Such realities are combined with a visual and powerful plea to establish “perimeters of control.” Practical advice is offered along with Biblical insight. A riveting presentation.
The Stages of Ministry: Borrowing concepts adapted from Robert Clinton, Doug lays out the call of ministry as a lifetime, not a task. So many pastors see their ministry as a series of appointments and pastorates and not a life of service. The difference may explain the 90% ministerial career drop-out rate. The failure to see life and ministry as a building experience with the great pay-off in the seasoned years causes many to opt-out early for a different career. A compelling look at the stages a minister goes through in kingdom service.
The Servant Heart: There has been a great deal of attention to “servant leadership.” This session is somewhat unique. It examines the four key Greek words for servant, and then their relationship with one with another – the relationship to the organization, to authority, to the work itself and then the spirit of the work – characterized by “doulos”. The bond-servant heart is to be at the heart of ministry. Sadly, the work is often placed at the center – teaching, preaching, singing, serving. When a person’s work is thwarted, crisis develops. A true servant serves Christ, in the church, under authority doing some task – a task which is never as important as the spirit in which that task must be completed.
Critical Assumptions in Launching a Church-Wide Prayer Ministry: Prayer must not be treated as a “have to” exercise! Any lasting revival is birthed in prayer and sustained in prayer. Pastors and leaders must guard the perimeters of their heart for the sake of the Church and cause of God in and through the Church. Balance in personal prayer is critical. Intercessors must be engaged especially to pray for the lost, for the unsaved. And yet, neither prayer or witnessing are enough to connect with the world around you. Mobilizing prayer throughout the city! Keep your witness positive. Keep prayer groups focused! Be persistent. Don’t give up!
The Power of Unity in a City: How many churches are there in your city? The answer is the same in every city. The answer is – one. There is one church, one true church, in the city. The only division allowable is geographic. There may be many congregations, but there is only one church. The greatest hindrance to a great awakening may be our division. How do we come together. How can we work through our differences. Doug offers models for understanding, not only the church ecclesia (gathered), but also the church disapora (scattered).
Casting Vision for a City-Wide Movement: “Intimacy with Christ (individually) and a visitation of God upon His people are conjoined – both aim ultimately at a fresh touch of God in heaven-sent revival resulting in widespread evangelization and a change in society!” The present effort of the church is characterized by competitive models which only destabilize the Church and result in the movement of members from one church to another. Ministers are pastoring congregations but no one is pastoring the city. Jesus wept over a divided city – over sheep without a shepherd. The churches of a community must find a way to come together for the sake of the crumbling culture! Prayer is the simplest, yet the most powerfully unifying experience that we can share! In prayer, God catalyzes our unity – and begins the process of learning what it means to be “the Church of the City.”
Additional Prayer Topics
Theology and Philosophy for Prayer Ministry: So you have decided to place a greater emphasis on prayer in your congregation. What does that mean? More opportunities for prayer requests? An additional prayer service? How does a church develop a balanced prayer ministry? Is there a difference between merely adding new prayer activities and creating a culture of prayer? This session provides the philosophical underpinning for a sound and balanced approach to prayer.
The Leaders, the Church, the City: Ezra prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, to do it, and to teach it. Doug traces the movement of revival from the heart of Ezra – to a city-wide awakening. And then examines what a ‘praying church’ – one structured to foster and sustain renewal – looks like. He ends with a focus on the lost next door. Meant to be a quick introduction to the idea of the church as a ‘house of prayer’, the focus is on the individual as the nexus of revival, and on prayer in the church as missional. One of the most requested messages on prayer.
Prayer Requests: Finding the Fault Lines of the Heart under Needs – One of the overlooked factors in “presenting our needs” to God is the way pressing needs affect our witness. There is an inter-relationship between these two that is often completely neglected. Doug explores the petitionary dimension of prayer in this teaching session. He offers practical insight for processing our prayer needs. Great teaching resource.
Organizing and Directing Intercessors: No prayer process is complete without the specific identification of and mobilization of intercessors. In this session, Doug talks about the role of the intercessors, the five key steps to take with intercessors – identify, train, team, deploy and debrief). He provides practical help in caring for intercessors.
Entertaining God: Abraham sat in the tent door and saw three men – angels all. He raced to them and pleaded that he be allowed to host them by providing dinner for them. In those moments, God finally broke the barrenness of Sarah. He confirmed generational blessing. He intimated that to Abraham – and perhaps to us – he would whisper secrets. God does nothing unless he first reveals it to his servants, the prophets. In the final movement of the chapter, Abraham is pleading for the salvation of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. Prayer is the means by which God wakes up intercessors for cities facing impending judgment. “God governs,” Wesley said, “by the prayers of His people!”
The Critical Strategic Uncomfortable Middle: This is the heart of intercession. It is the place Jesus came to secure. It is the cross. It is the point between heaven and earth, between God and lost men, between light and darkness. To this place, we have been called. We, however, prefer the end – the place of blessing with no further obligation. God wants us in the middle. A powerful message. A unique understanding of the role and power of intercession.
The All-Church Prayer Meeting: How do you hold an effective prayer gathering? Doug offers suggestions for conducting an all-church prayer gathering. In addition, he provides information about prayer groups and their effectiveness. Prayer styles and the implications of content are explored. Models are examined.
The Power of Prayer Missions/Prayer Walks: Far too many people see prayer walking and prayer missions as gimmicky. Is it more? How do we read a city? How do we sense and see more than the obvious? More than the physical condition and characteristics visible only to our eyes? How do we sense the spiritual climate in which we live, often unconsciously? And, more practically, is it possible that the low level of motivation in our churches toward mission can will only come alive when we stand in the middle of the city and prayer? And when we do – does God act in different ways? What power and effect does such prayer have?
The Seven Elements of a Solemn Assembly: Gleaning from eight specially called solemn assemblies in the Old Testament, Doug notes the common elements and places them into a catalytic blueprint for spiritual awakening. The session is one-part principle and one-part prayer. It is a template that pastors may choose to use with their own congregations.
The II Chronicles 7:14 Prayer Experience: Many people are familiar with the prayer themes of II Chronicles 7:14. Doug calls it the ‘wild-card’ for national renewal. When neither king (executive branch), priest (representative branch) or judge (judicial branch) of government is willing to call the nation to repentance, only a grass-roots, bubble-up prayer effort, grounded in humility and repentance can change us. This prayer experience is part teaching and part litany, structured with unstructured moments.
Common Mistakes in Prayer Ministry: Doug shares his perspective on the most common mistakes congregations make when they begin a prayer ministry! Examples of the things he covers in this session include – a shallow theology of prayer, prayer as a added program among others, a leaderless movement, short-term thinking, failures with intercessors, failing to turn prayer outward. This is a stretching workshop – not for the faint hearted.
Spending An Hour with God: Here is a simple workshop based on principles of intimacy from the Song of Solomon – an intoxicating passion, a place for intimacy with God, a daily rendezvous, time in the Word, unhurried seasons in prayer. Laced into the principles are practical suggestions for spending an hour with God in prayer daily. Motivational. Inspirational.
Uncovering Prayer’s DNA: Prayer is simple – like the human cell. Prayer is complex – like the human cell. It’s contradictory. It’s easy! In this riveting experience, Doug unwraps what he calls prayer’s core – communion with God, petition, and intercession, all wrapped in thanksgiving. He provides some basic models for prayer. In the end, the participant is given an idea along with tools to begin the process of creating a more effective personal prayer life.
Making the Church a House of Prayer: There are three kinds of churches – those that pray in crisis, those with a prayer ministry, and those who seek to bring prayer to the heart of all they do! This workshop focuses on the basics of being a house of prayer – a 3-5 year process. Here the goal is not to add prayer options, but to change the very culture of the church to a praying church.
The Congregational Prayer Group Ministry: In this two-part workshop, Doug takes a church into the nuts and bolts of the prayer group ministry. He says every church should have a “church-wide” prayer service. And out of that, should emerge smaller focused prayer groups, each taking smaller and more specific prayer needs and causes. He talks about the dangers and dividends of prayer groups. Why do some prayer groups succeed and others fail? What does a prayer group do? How do they function effectively? At the heart of prayer groups are always intercessors. Most churches have never identified their intercessors, trained or teamed them, directed or debriefed them. Here are some practical ideas about mobilizing intercessors and lacing them into the heart of the prayer ministry itself. A really powerful set of workshops.
Praying Scripture: A simple session drawn from the larger seminar, “Enriching Your Personal Prayer Life!” Beginning with a reflective listening experience out of Scripture, Doug moves forward by identifying Psalms of Order, Disorder and a New Order. He suggests that we must learn to discern our seasons. An illuminating workshop.
The Great Commitment, the Great commandment and the Great Commission: We often detach the Great Commission and see it as a stand-alone matter. Doug argues that the Great Commission is non-negotiable, and yet impossible to fulfill apart from the Great Commandment. That commandment is at the heart of the Great Commission. And yet that cannot be fulfilled without the Great Commitment – prayer! This is a three-fold cord – prayer, care and sharing the gospel. The mission will fail unless we intertwine all three.
Reading the City: How do you read a city? What are the characteristics of a city under spiritual assault? Living in a Christian nation which is turning pagan, we have to learn to read the signs of the spiritual siege. And we have to learn the principles that work against such a spiritual siege and promise breakthrough. This workshop is often given as preparation for the prayer mission seminar – or in cases where a group of people are preparing to undergo extensive prayer walking.