In 1857 there was a 46 year old man named Jeremiah Lamphere who lived in New York City. Jeremiah loved the Lord tremendously, but he didn’t feel that he could do much for the Lord until he began to feel a burden for the lost and accepted an invitation from his church to be an inner city missionary.
So in July of 1857 he started walking up and down the streets of New York passing out tracts and talking to people about Jesus, but he wasn’t having any success. Then God put it on his heart to try prayer. So he printed up a bunch of tracts, and he passed them out to anyone and everyone he met. He invited anyone who wanted to come to the 3rd floor of the Old North Dutch Reform Church on Fulton Street in New York City from 12 to 1pm on Wednesday to pray. He passed out hundreds and hundreds of fliers and put up posters everywhere he could.
Wednesday came and at noon nobody showed up. So Jeremiah got on his knees and started praying. For 30 minutes he prayed by himself when finally five other people walked in. The next week 20 people came. The next week between 30 and 40 people came. They then decided to meet every day from 12 to 1pm to pray for the city.
Before long a few ministers started coming and they said, “We need to start this at our churches.” Within six months there were over 5000 prayer groups meeting everyday in N.Y. Soon the word spread all over the country. Prayer meetings were started in Philadelphia, Detroit, and Washington D.C. In fact, President Franklin Pierce started going almost every day to a noon-day prayer meeting. By 1859 some 15,000 cities in America were having downtown prayer meetings everyday at noon, and thousands were brought to Christ.
God is looking for intercessors in the earth that will cry out to Him day and night. “He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor; Therefore His own arm brought salvation for Him; and His own righteousness, it sustained Him” (Isaiah 59:16). Intercessors desire to “move heaven” in order to see change here on the earth.