CCMC’s Worship & Evangelism (W&E) ministry organised a Prayer Walk in January 2024. Attended by over 30 CCMC members and leaders, the walk was a fruitful effort to pray for the vicinity to prepare for outreach. Prayer Walk leader Michelle Chian reflects on her experience during the walk.
My Prayer Walk journey began during the October 2023 CCMC Spiritual Retreat where I had sought the Lord for His priorities for my 2024, and clearly received the word “outwards”. At the same time, I really wanted to get to know Joy Yeo (W&E Committee Chairperson) better, since we had served together as altar prayer ministers in church and at this retreat, but never had a real conversation together.
When we finally had the opportunity to talk and share our stories over breakfast, she asked me to helm a Prayer Walk initiative in the MGS vicinity which W&E wanted to start in 2024. Choosing to fear God more than I feared being in a committee, I agreed, never actually having been on a Prayer Walk.
To begin, I sought out our Pastor-in-charge David Gwee to lead the Prayer Walk, and he agreed, but he also set a tight deadline to do the Walk right at the beginning of the new year. With the year-end holiday season looming, I asked God to somehow provide me with 12 walk leaders, who were willing to be trained spiritually (by Ps David Ho) and to plan a walking route in their own neighbourhoods around MGS.
God always provides exceedingly more than we ask for, and despite people being away etc, He raised more than what I asked for; including a logistics team and a team of 4 intercessors, who could not or did not want to walk, but were willing to commit to actively pray for the Walk.
As I prepared for the Walk, I was reminded of CCMC’s long term vision “To Know God Deeply and Make Him Known Widely”, and that even our logo had a large cross which stretched far and wide from the MGS building, calling us to share the good news of salvation beyond MGS, to the Upper Bukit Timah area and beyond.
The what & why A Prayer Walk is exactly as it is named – praying while walking, talking, and listening to God as He opens our eyes to see what He sees. In line with CCMC’s 2024 theme of “Filled with the Spirit to Reach Out”, W&E’s mission for the Prayer Walk was to prepare the ground around MGS for outreach. Our objectives were to bless the neighbourhood and pray for spiritual revival, to increase our awareness of spiritual forces, to learn to see people with compassion as Jesus did, and to ask God to show us creative access opportunities to spread the gospel and be a blessing to people.
The week leading up to our Prayer Walk was exceedingly wet, and there really is no Plan B for an outdoor walk in the MGS neighbourhood. On Jan 6 morning, the weather forecast was for 50% probability of 1mm/hour rainfall during our planned walk hours. The intercessors prayed. It was still drizzling when walkers started to arrive for the first hour of Worship, Briefing and Prayer. By the time PIC prayed his sending off prayer, the rain had stopped, and it remained clear for the next 2 hours so that we could walk in comfort and safety! Praise God for His mighty hand in containing the rain! As PIC noted, he was very encouraged by these CCMC walkers who loved the Lord, loved CCMC and wanted to reach out to our neighbours.
About 30 CCMC members were divided into 6 segments, led by 1-2 segment captains, most of whom lived in the segment they led: King Albert Park, Beauty World, and 2 segments each on the Bukit Timah and Dunearn sides of the MGS vicinity. Each segment had its own characteristics.
Another prayer group out on their walk
Some groups were able to pray specifically for neighbours known to the captains. Co-captain Sharon Cheung shared about her segment, “As one of us is very familiar with specific concerns & issues of many of the households here in the Mayfair area (being in the Residents Committee)…we were more able to pray specific prayers for many households. We walked to houses with neighbours that had incidents of disagreement amongst them, (and said) prayers for God's love, forgiveness, consideration & healing (on these) houses.”
Other groups got to know their walking companions better as they walked and prayed. “We enjoyed the camaraderie and easy conversations between the walk members. Getting to know new members and sharing experiences. Starting off with a prayerful and purposed mindset caused us to notice things which we had not noticed before, e.g. places where God would like for us to pray for,” said Beauty World co-captain Samantha Woo.
“My faith was encouraged by speaking to my fellow group members as they shared about experiences with God and overcoming suffering. Good way of intergenerational bonding!” said the Sixth to Garlick Avenue captain Alysson Lam.
Co-captains of the MGS to Garlick Ave segment, Patricia Yan and Ng Ka Yen, commented on possibilities and ideas for CCMC outreach, “The area we walked has a lot of condos which is a potential harvest (with hundreds of families that are non-believers). We also know we have (CCMC) members living in them…” Many groups also noted the prevalence of migrant workers on construction/reconstruction sites and expressed a desire to bless them practically.
We experienced the Holy Spirit in different ways. For me personally, both during the planning process and the actual Walk, He reminded me that what was important to God was not just the task at hand, but people and their relationships with each other and with Him. I felt God’s compassion for the lost in the houses with feng shui or other religious objects on their front doors, for the elderly in rundown single-storey homes who may be lonely or ill, for the little children in a beautifully appointed preschool, who were clearly from affluent, but perhaps spiritually poor, families.
“It’s clear the Spirit called each one of us - there were some unlikely participants (including myself) and none of us felt it was weird to stand around by the roadside and to pray. From the prayers that were articulated, we were given insights and understanding,” said Binjai segment captain April Ong.
One of the prayer groups on their walk! Eck Kheng is second from left
Commenting on how he experienced the Holy Spirit in this activity, King Albert Park segment captain Goh Eck Kheng said, “it was in the use of sight, sound and even smell” (to notice where prayer was needed), said walker Chia Meng, “Deep down there is an opening of my heart to try to do something for the dwellers there. A sort of thirst and desire.”
The lyrics of an old Christian campfire song “Pass it On” starts with: ‘It only takes a spark to get a fire going…’ It is my prayer that this first Prayer Walk kicks off a wave of CCMC walkers throughout our neighbourhoods, bringing God’s Kingdom to earth as we walk.
May God multiply the sparks ignited during the Prayer Walk that Saturday to grow into a raging fire of revival in CCMC, our neighbourhood and beyond, that every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord.