Cohort vs Prayer Group: What’s the Difference?
One goal of the prayer initiative for this year is to establish between five and ten prayer cohorts.
But what makes a cohort different from any other prayer group? To begin with, it is important to realize that all prayer is important, but there are different spheres and areas of prayer.
I have a couple of friends who are doctors. They are general practitioners who meet with their patients to diagnose and treat a whole range symptoms and illnesses. But there are times when these doctors will refer a patient to a specialist.
The specialist has chosen to study and specialize in a specific area of medicine. A cardiac specialist focuses on the heart and is better equipped to diagnose and treat heart issues. Specialists are important, but they are only a part of the whole picture of health care.
In a similar way, cohorts are one part of the larger work of prayer which the Lord is calling all believers to be a part of. The focus of these cohorts is to understand how God is moving through the work of the Spirit and at the same time recognize the ways Satan is seeking to block or hinder Kingdom advancement.
As a result, the cohorts seek to engage, through high-level spiritual warfare, the strongholds which the enemy has, and is, constructing.
A Balance of Corporate and Individual Prayer
These cohorts will be equipped to understand how enemy strongholds are formed and the strategies and tactics which can be used to dismantle these strongholds. But the cohorts are only a part of the work of prayer. The ongoing work of individual prayer coupled with corporate prayer groups is also needed.
This balance in prayer can be seen in the current prayer work taking place at the Community of the Cross. Friday mornings ‘Prayer around the Table’ takes place in the log house.
This is an opportunity for those in the neighbourhood of the COC to gather and pray for the needs of the ministry, the needs of the churches represented, and for what God wants to do in the area around Black Mountain.
This group is not a cohort, but a prayer group. Nevertheless, their prayers are important and vital for the advancement of the Kingdom of God.
“Prayer for the World”; A Cohort
On Wednesday mornings, the “Prayer for the World” group meets. This is a cohort. Their focus is praying for what God is doing around the world and specifically praying about some of the Islamic terrorist organizations which are bringing persecution to Christians.
One such group is Boko Haram in Nigeria. Over the past few months the cohort has prayed for demonic cloaking to be pierced, for Satan’s Kingdom to be divided and for God’s truth and power to be made manifest.
News stories have emerged which reported that the territory held by the group has been reduced and that there have been changes within leadership due to disagreements.
These are small indications that the prayers of this cohort along with the intercession of others around the world are being effective in countering this stronghold.
Are you Called to Join a Cohort?
We are all called to the ongoing work of prayer, but not everyone is called to be a part of a cohort. In the same way that not all doctors are called to be heart specialists. But for those who feel that this is an area the Lord is calling them to, an online equipping course for cohorts will begin in March.
Introduction to Cohorts
For those who would like to hear more about cohorts and the upcoming online equipping, an introductory session will be offered online on Wednesday, March 8, at 3 different times: 7pm GMT, 7pm EST, and 7pm AKST (or 2pm EST, 7pm EST, and 11pm EST).
We will provide an overview of the course:
- What are cohorts and how are they different from other prayer groups?
- The model of a cohort (Moses, Aaron and Hur)
- Preparation for a cohort
- Watching what God is doing and seeing what the enemy is doing
- How strongholds work
- The three battle spaces
A full moderated online course on Cohort Basics will be offered beginning on March 14, with 6 sessions, ending April 18.
Subjects covered will include:
- Spheres of prayer
- Cohort model
- Cohort preparation
- The “ins” and “outs” of intercession and strongholds
- The 3 battle spaces
Participation in the course includes watching video teaching online at your own time, downloading the teaching materials,?then meeting with others?over the internet and/or phone?each week ?for review of the teaching, discussion, discernment, and prayer.? Times for the course will be set based on students’ locations and time zones.
How to Sign Up
If you would like to be part of the “Introduction to Cohorts” informational call or receive an application for the Cohorts Basics Course, please email Martin Boardman, our Prayer Mobilizer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.