Connecting Leaders for Prayer and City Transformation
Inner~Views #034 NPPN interviewed Jacky Minard
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Note from Adam Shields, an NPPN Team Member:
I met Jacky Minard while visiting missionary friends in France. Jacky had traveled about six hours to witness the baptism of his niece. We happened to strike up a conversation (because of he happened to be standing near me while waiting for lunch and he knew English). It was only after the pastor of the church joined us and we got a formal introduction did I find out that Jacky was a significant prayer leader in France. (And a member of one of the leading evangelical families. His extended family includes many pastors.) We were only able to talk for a few minutes more at that time (lunch was being served). But I was able to get his email and website. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to ask him if he would be willing to be interview for NPPN.
It is important to find out what is going on in other countries. Especially those countries like France that are often misunderstood or mis-characterized by us in the United States.
NPPN ~ Jacky, can you tell us about "40 Days of Blessing"?
The 40 days of blessing came after 7 years of 40 days of prayer and fasting for France. We can't tell you about the days of blessing without sharing what happened before… and it is a ten years story…
Ten years ago, some events were showing that France could be on the edge of something very important.
For myself, I was just finishing a political involvement. You know, in this mater, it can stop radically when you lose elections! After some very intensive years, I was free and seeking God's will. What was the next step of my commitment for my country?
In the same time, the Lord sent a prophet to France. Pastor John Mulinde came from Uganda with a word for our country. He was feeling "that God is pushing France into a position that it has not experienced for a very long time, being at a crossroads… If the Church of France will arise in unity to cry out to God to remember mercy; if it will work at cleansing the Land, reconciliation, and instituting prayer all over the land; yes, if deep travailing prayer will rise to God in desperate seeking, then the Lord will certainly visit France with a new refreshing touch… The church can determine the course of this great nation."
We can say that with the prophecy, the Lord gave the tools and the means to do so. As soon as I said yes to this word, I had the privilege to live a powerful visitation of the Lord that changed my life forever. I spent 18 months in the powerful presence of the Lord, just praying and often fasting…
During that time, the first 40 days of prayer and fasting for France were launched and the Lord raised up an English prayer leader to organise a worldwide 40 days of prayer and fasting for France in 2001. He is the one who had the prayer guide's idea so that Christians all over the world would pray the same targets for France on the same day.
John Mulinde said also that we had to be a great number to pray and in unity, 2 millions Christians prayed and fasted for France that year!
But the greatest miracle is that the French church had been caught by the Holy Spirit to join the movement! It was the one that had to repent for the French situation! We continued till 2006 with a prayer guide each year that put into practice what the Holy Spirit had been saying through his servants. Tens of thousands of French Christians have been involved in this wonderful season.
All these prayer guides and prophecies are available in English on our website: www.objectiffrance.fr
NPPN ~ When did you start working on the 40 Days of Blessing and what brought it about?
After 7 years repenting and fighting against the evil, we felt that the task was accomplished. 2007 was the time to enter in possession of God's deeds by blessing. You know, French people are not used to bless others, we are used to criticise, to blame, and we are very suspicious… so, asking to spend 40 days in blessing everybody, especially the authorities, was a spiritual earthquake! Some Christians did not understand the message and the utility of blessing but many did.
The main vision is launched by a national prayer consultation, gathering prayer leaders (3 times a year) from all denominations including charismatic Catholics.
One of the ways to see the Lord acting powerfully is to change our own mind. We must change radically (metanoia) if we want to see His Kingdom come. Learning to bless is one of the means. We know that these 40 days had opened some doors, especially for the national elections.
NPPN ~ Can you tell me about the spiritual state of France?
France has one of the most opposed histories against faith in the world, especially during the last two centuries. The French Revolution was fighting the king and the church, battling for a society built on reason and rights. One of the main tools was free masonry leading all the priority domains by a militant secularism (French "laïcité"). The result is a weakened traditional church and only 0.6 % born again Christians, a record number! Evangelical churches are very little (generally 50 members) and parcelled out mainly because she is issued from so many missions and denominations. You can see the gap and the task!
These last years, we see a new spiritual openness among French people, specially the young generation, some authorities have understood the necessity of faith and the utility of the church. Some mega-churches, generally multi-ethnic, have been founded, especially around Paris. Leaders feel the necessity of working together like never before. The media speaks more kindly about Churches and Christians, and that is really new!
NPPN ~ Do you think that the role of Prayer is changing in France?
Two things have really changed.
Prayer was centred on Church life and Evangelization. The 40 days helped Christians to turn also toward society and the nation's destiny.
In many cities, Christians from different denominations and churches learned to pray together or at least to speak to each other…
Generally, we can say that the priority role of prayer has been understood and emphasized. We see prayer spreading and prayer groups rising everywhere.
NPPN ~ Who is participating in the "40 Days of Blessing"?
We touch Christians from every denomination, mostly Charismatic, Pentecostal and Catholic. Every year, some ten thousands of Christians are participating in some way.
NPPN ~ What have you learned about encouraging prayer in the local church?
It is quite difficult to touch churches in our country. Many have no full time pastors; most of little denominations that have no communication means. We write to all the churches every year. We encourage Christians to organize prayer meetings in their own church and to join other churches. We encourage also 24/7 prayer weeks in partnership with other churches so that there could be a continuous prayer during the 40 days. The N°2 and 3 prayer guides gave also some practical teaching about prayer meetings and 24/7 prayer weeks. Since 2003, the prayer guides included special pages for families. The vision has always been to "pray without ceasing" (1 Thess.5,17) and to be as many as possible in unity. Prayer increased at individual, family and collective levels.
NPPN ~ What words of wisdom do you have for the church outside of France?
The success of this mobilization did not come from our strength, means or qualification but from obedience to what God said in a particular time for our country. This powerful word of God put into action with faith and determination did the work. We just had to follow what the Holy Spirit was doing in the hearts and saw God's miraculous provision.
We are still a very little church with very limited means, we have much to learn from your experience and we are very open to any form of collaboration.
NPPN ~ Would you write a prayer of Blessing for France that we (the readers)can pray with you?
Lord of glory, we bless you for this beautiful country you created, its varied landscapes, cultures and foods, this home of freedom, democracy, equality and brother-hood, this land of love, romance and "good life" and the leading place you gave to it in the nations. We bless these riches so that they may be used, by your mercy, to let your Kingdom come on France as we see it coming on so many parts of the world. We bless the French authorities and pray that you inspire their words and actions. We bless you for each church tower in every village, may your Spirit of life and truth fill them and the entire country! Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!
>>>Check their site @ http://www.objectiffrance.fr
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