Pastor Gregg Matte sensed a deep-seated burden from the Lord. He has been challenged by the Spirit to make prayer a reality in his personal daily practice for over the last year. In his intercession God impressed on his heart a rallying of the pastors of our city to gather and to pray.
He sent out an invitation for pastors to meet for prayer in his office on a Thursday in November. The simple agenda was to prayer together for the city of Houston. Remember this gathering for pastors and ministry leaders was planned a month and a half in advance.
The week of the pre-planned event, the city of Houston became world news. Houston’s mayor had sent out a subpoena to five local pastors. Each of these ministers were ordered to hand over all sermons that spoke on homosexuality or mentioned the mayor.
The Christian community was shocked. But, they were not shocked into compliance or frightened into submission. Instead, the pastors rose up and stood together.
Senator Ted Cruze joined the pastors who gathered in Pastor Gregg Matte’s office. He never knew that this was part of God’s providential plan. But, the time was perfect.
The media came to cover this galvanizing event, historic in American church history. Pastors normally humbly compliant and supportive of our God-ordained governmental officials, drew a line in front of their pulpits. No governmental intimidation or control over the message of God delivered in the name of His Son would be tolerated.
Over 50 pastors packed into Pastor Gregg’s office. He directed the prayer session to pray for our mayor, protect the church and move on the local government to rescind their directive of control over the pulpits of the city. We broke up into groups of 4-6 and prayed up a powerful time of intercession and supplication.
After an hour of prayer we moved downstairs to stand in solidarity before the news cameras as Senator Cruze addressed the media. Clearly he spoke courageous words of freedom, liberty and religious autonomy. God’s servants had a right to speak the words of God without governmental oversight or control.
God’s calling was the sole directive in the words spoken in American pulpits. Furthermore, it was a liberty written in our own Constitution. The scene of pastors from different denominations, various ethnic backgrounds and multi-generational was powerful.
They stood together with the common bond of Christ among them.
photo credit: brucefong photography