A very good thing happened in Hot Springs, Arkansas on Friday and Saturday.  It has been called a miracle by some.

People from over 50 different churches came together to pray.

They came from the Assembly of God Churches.

They came from Baptist churches.

They came from Methodist Churches.

They came from Nazarene and Pentecostal churches.

They came from many different Christian denominations.

The purpose and topic of the meeting was prayer.

As advertised, it did not turn into a political rally,

a day and a half of entertainment,

or a denominational competition.

The speaker for the event was a man from Georgia named Al Whittinghill.

Mr. Whittinghill was very easy to listen to.

Al Whittinghill

Mr. Whittinghill was very difficult to listen to.

He was easy to listen to because of his enthusiasm for the subject.  He was easy to listen to because of his knowledge of the subject.

He was difficult to listen to because of part of his message.  He spoke of the fall of history’s powerful empires and the common factors that caused their demise.

Today, the United States meets every criteria for societal failure.

Mr. Whittinghill took the attendees through the pages of the Old Testament to illustrate a simple message that can be found in the words of Jesus:


“For My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples,” (Isaiah 56:7)

On Saturday afternoon, the group split into small groups and went to locations throughout the city.  There they spent time praying for the people of the city, of the state, of the nation, and for those who frequent the particular locations where they stood.

They went to the schools.

They went to the churches; many to churches that weren’t their own.

They went to the jail.

They went to city hall.  They went to the court house.

Some walked through town asking folks if they needed prayer.

One group went to the top of the Hot Springs Mountain Tower where they could see all of the locations where Christians had scattered throughout the city.

I went to four locations with two kind folks whom I had met a few times.

Later, on Saturday evening, during the final session of what was called “The Prayer Summit,” those who wanted to share their prayer experiences from earlier in the day were handed a microphone.

The Prayer Summit ended quietly, with short prayers by some of the participants and a final prayer by Mr. Whittinghill.

I left with a few impressions.

I don’t pray enough.

Our churches don’t pray enough.

It is possible for churches to look past denominational differences and come together for corporate prayer.

There is hope.

We, the American Christians, must humble ourselves, seek God’s face, and turn from our wicked ways.

Chris Reimers

2 Responses to COMMON GROUND

  1. A very uplifting post on some Christians out beating the bush. Imagine asking folks if they wanted prayer. These folks sound like the real thing. Shades of the first century church. Where are the rest of us?

    Awesome i think I’ll move to Arkansas.

    • Chris says:

      Hi Manny,

      I’m glad the post makes the event sound as uplifting as it was. The event was “birthed” over 25 years ago when a small group of women started to pray for our city. The Hot Springs Women of Prayer continue to meet every month and were instrumental in making this event happen.
      We would love you to move here. I must be honest, however, and admit that our city has very high crime numbers and drug problems. Because it is a tourist town, the numbers are suppressed. Earlier in the month I posted some disturbing stats on this blog.
      The Prayer Summit event was not only awesome, it was necessary.
      I have already talked to a friend and it appears that we will repeat the event next year. Now that many churches know what to expect, I’m guessing that the attendance will double.

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