Last year, Pastor Bobby Chaw received a revelation to pray for every one of his zone members by name. Out of that act of obedience came many testimonies.
Psalms 27:1 reads, “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Kethie Lim experienced this word in a tangible way.
“Pastor Bobby sent a voice recording of himself praying Psalm 27 over my cell group member, Kethie,” says Eliora Chiam, a zone secretary in the Chinese Service, who also serves as a cell group leader.
What Pastor Bobby did not know was, at that point, Kethie was being harassed by her tenant’s boyfriend. He would appear outside her house daily and bang on her door loudly, demanding to see her tenant. That caused Kethie to have anxiety attacks and she could not sleep soundly at night. She would wake up in a panic at the slightest noise.
“However, on the day Kethie listened to the prayer recording and declaration of Psalm 27, she felt the bondage of fear broken,” Eliora continues. “She was completely delivered and started to sleep through the night again.”
HOW TO PRAY FOR YOUR MEMBERS
Kethie is just one of the many members who received audio prayer recordings from Bobby Chaw, executive pastor of City Harvest Church. In his sermon “Reflections On Prayer” in January this year, he told the church that he had been inspired to pray for each member of his Chinese congregation by name when he reflected on Luke 22:31-32.
In those verses, Jesus said, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail”. Realising that Jesus’ prayer had a direct impact on Simon’s faith, he wanted to do the same for his members.
Every morning, Pastor Bobby would record and send a prayer by WhatsApp voice message to each member. He would take Psalms 23 and pray verse by verse for each member.
For example, this was how he would pray for a member, Adam: “The Lord is Adam’s shepherd, he shall lack nothing. He makes Adam lie down in green pastures, he leads him beside quiet waters, and he refreshes his soul. He guides Adam along the right paths for His name’s sake. Even though Adam walks through the darkest valley, he will fear no evil, for You are with him; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort him.”
“When I first started, I thought this was too daunting,” he told the church. “’How am I going to finish praying for the entire Chinese congregation? But you know what, I just do it—cell group by cell group, member by member.’”
He stressed that the one thing he learned about prayer was to simply start praying. “Be it 15 minutes or half an hour a day, start praying and let it grow to an hour or more. The important thing is consistency. You must get started.”
TESTIMONIES FROM THE CONGREGATION
Kong Caijuan, a pastoral supervisor in CHC’s Chinese service shared that her members were blessed and strengthened in the Lord after listening to the audio prayers. The blessings also flowed to their family—one of them reported that their family member received a salary increment.
“One of my members received a verse in Psalm 23 from the Lord. Coincidentally, Pastor Bobby also prayed the same verse over her,” Caijuan shares. “She was facing many challenges at work because three of her colleagues had resigned and she needed to cover their work. She almost gave up many times. However, this verse always strengthened her and kept her going! Now, she has bounced back and is focusing on God. Recently, she also received a promotion. That was what she always wanted to achieve!”
Zhang Hui Lan, another one of Caijuan’s members wrote to her that she was thankful for Pastor Bobby’s audio prayer in January. He prayed Psalms 23 over her, and she felt her spirit come alive. After listening to the audio prayer, Hui Lan decided to learn how to pray and returned to attending services on-site. Soon, her mood began to change and she became happier and more confident.
“My company told me that they wanted me to retire early, so I was very worried about my house loan and other expenses,” shares Hui Lan. “But after the prayer, I was able to keep my job and even got a pay increment. My health report also showed that I had a high level of protein in my urine which could eventually affect my kidney. But after praying, I received complete healing. Praise the Lord!”
Recently, Hui Lan experienced another blessing from God. She had been trying to sell her one-room flat for a long time but the offers that came in did not match her expectation. After listening to Pastor Bobby’s audio prayer, faith arose in her and she asked her cell group members to pray together with her. God answered her prayers and she managed to sell off her flat at a good price.
Pastor Bobby has also started praying for his pastoral zone in the English Service. A cell group leader Sharon Lee shares that her member, Jennifer Leet has been suffering from Parkinson’s for the past 10 years.
“It had affected her quality of life—she cannot work and has to depend on her mother to care for her,” Sharon explains. Jennifer felt imprisoned by her situation. When she received the audio prayer from Pastor Bobby, she was very thankful. She was so encouraged after listening to the prayer that her body and her faith were both strengthened.
She texted Sharon, “I remembered that Pastor Bobby’s prayer for me is for physical healing. My body feels stronger now and is less shaky. It used to be that at certain times, my body would shake uncontrollably. I could not do anything and that was rather frustrating.
“I believe the Lord worked through the doctor. After the (audio) prayer, I went for my review and the doctor said it was the side effects of one of the medicines. The doctor told me to cut down on that medicine and I did. My body is healthier now and God’s healing is in process. I will continue to get better each day.”
God indeed works through ways beyond anyone’s imagination. Even a short prayer recording can bring encouragement and healing to a person in a difficult situation. If you feel the prompting to pray for a friend, take a step of faith and send them an audio prayer.