Q. How did the idea for 24-7prayer come about?
Greig: We were inspired by the 18th century Moravians who prayed non-stop for 100 years in shifts and in the process rewrote history, converting John Wesley along the way. I knew that God was calling his church to pray and that ‘we were bad at it’. After a chance visit to Hernnhut, the German village in which the 100-year prayer meeting, I figured that if the Moravians could do a century of 24/7 prayer, we could at least try for a month in our church back home.
That month went crazy as God showed up in the dedicated prayer room in miraculous ways. At the end of the first month we couldn’t stop. At the end of the second month the momentum was even greater, and then, in the third month of continuous intercession that single prayer room began to multiply all over the world. Four years later, 24-7 prayer is in 50 nations, has missions movements targeting the high places in youth culture, has prayed continuously since September 1999 and is even establishing modern day monasteries based on the example of the ancient Celts.
Q. 24-7 prayer operates very different than a normal business or organization. What is your philosophy about the structure of this unique collection of people?
Greig: Because 24-7 Prayer started by accident it has always grown more organically than organizationally; driven by relationships rather than results. Anyone can join in with the 24-7 movement by opening a non-stop prayer room and yet no one can actually join. Key decisions are taken at an annual Round Table at which we re-negotiate our vision statement to keep it true to our friendships and the sense of what God is saying to us as we move forward together. We have partnerships with organizations as diverse as The Salvation Army in Australia, a network of German punks and Youth With a Mission. We are committed to stopping whenever God does, but until then we will surf this wave for all it’s worth!
Q. What personal setbacks did the leaders of 24-7prayer encounter? What affect did that have?
Greig: Alongside many miracles there have been many unanswered prayers, frustrations and pain. For example, my wife Samie nearly died of a massive brain tumor just 18 months after the birth of the movement and she continues to struggle with ill health despite life-saving surgery. This sense of weakness and brokenness experienced by many of the 24-7 leaders has perhaps brought a maturity and depth to the movement.
Q. What are Christians doing on the hedonistic island of Ibiza?
Greig: Secular media has described the Spanish Island of Ibiza as a modern day ‘Sodom and Gomorrah’. 24-7 is there, reaching out to the island’s party people practically and prayerfully, counseling, helping people home who are too drunk to stand, sharing the gospel and praying amidst all the bars and clubs. The presence of these young Christians in such a place has caused massive media interest in Europe.
Q. Explain the significance of the title: Red Moon Rising.
Greig: 24-7 Prayer was launched, as a movement, in a nightclub in England and that night a vast red moon rose in the winter sky. It reminded us of the prophet Joel’s prediction that a blood red moon would mark the Last Days, a prediction later preached by Peter on the day of Pentecost. The red moon has become a recurring theme for the 24-7 prayer movement; we see it as God’s heavenly logo for the era in which we live as the Spirit is poured out on ‘all flesh’, dreams and visions abound and salvation comes to ‘all that call upon the name of the Lord.’ A red moon has risen over every generation since Pentecost. Now it is our turn to stand in the spotlight of history.
Q. Who is 24-7prayer for?
Greig: Our prayer rooms are used by tiny children drawing pictures for God, right up to a 96 year old who said it was ‘the best thing’ he had experienced in years! But the focus of our prayers is particularly on young people – the church family’s missing generation, and our materials tend to be particularly pitched at a postmodern mindset.
Q. Give a couple of examples of some supernatural occurrences in the 24-7 prayer history.
• A Canadian lady’s back was completely healed in answer to prayer. There have been many healing miracles.
• A brand new Christian in Australia stepped into a prayer room and received a ‘waking vision’ of himself in Venezuela preaching the gospel to hostile crowds. Afterwards he still couldn’t pronounce the word Venezuela correctly and had never heard of visions before.
• In Switzerland we have a verified instance of 14,000 Swiss Francs (about $10,000) materializing in a 24-7 leaders’ cleaning cupboard. Twice.
• A 13 year old boy in California who struggled to receive God’s love, having heard many talks and read books on God’s heart, finally experienced the reality of His love alone in a prayer room one night.
And of course the greatest miracle of them all…
• Most weeks someone somewhere will simply walk into a 24-7 prayer room, encounter Jesus for themselves and give their lives to Him.
Q. What's your hope for this book--the telling of the 24-7prayer history?
Greig: Red Moon Rising is about the adventure of faith and the power of persevering prayer. It’s about what can happen when ordinary people dare to dream extraordinary dreams, responding recklessly to the whispered invitations of God. Our prayer is that readers will be inspired to say ‘yes’ to the Holy Spirit whatever that means for them and however inadequate they may sometimes feel.
Q. Was there ever a time when you felt like you were crazy for doing this? If so, how did you get through it?
Greig: If God doesn’t exist, then the fact that we have now mobilized 10,000’s of people to rise in the night and talk to a wall is the sum total of stupidity. But if – just if – there is a God, we can be sure that we are unlocking the greatest power available to humanity. Without doubt this is a movement of the Spirit, initiated by God much to our amazement. In the words of the Matrix, “Where we go from here is a choice I leave up to you.”