The young adult mission event Find Your Mission held in the Netherlands with the Czech Republic Territory in July/August was based at the Goodwill Corps. Each week participants had the opportunity to experience many different ways of praying in the heart of Amsterdam’s red light district.

Every Sunday evening was dedicated to a different style of prayer. During the first week a massive cross was placed on the floor and each side of the cross had different materials (sand, stone, sackcloth and netting) and a particular prayer station.

The sand stood for discipleship, with the idea that sand is used in building and constructing, that sandpaper is used for polishing rough edges and also time, represented in hour glasses and how it should be used wisely. The stone demonstrated firmness and security in our journey and a way to find God’s mission in our lives.

The sackcloth, quoted quite a few times in the Bible, reminded participants about proper worship and repentance while the netting symbolized social justice and the barriers that exclude people from society. Walking on the netting made people feel uncomfortable, realizing that making changes is not always the most easy and comfortable way, but it is necessary.  

On the second Sunday, the participants had the opportunity to try out different rhythms of prayer such as praying the Bible, circles of influence, silence and solitude, listening prayer and prayer walking.

During the third week they went in search of materials to create their own prayer stations based on the realities that they were witnessing every day– people in addiction, oppressed women and the homeless and refugees. 

Participants were encouraged to think of themselves as “Watchmen on the walls pleading to God on behalf of the city of Amsterdam” (Isaiah 62). During that week the red light area was also prayer walked and God spoke deeply into the lives of each one, opening their eyes to things that they hadn’t seen before and turning these revelations into prayer.

In the final week a prayer labyrinth was designed in such a way that each person had to find their way into and then out of the middle. Each station within the labyrinth was focused on ourselves and on what we had to leave behind. In the middle was the ‘holy ground’ where we could meet God and spend time with Him. From the holy ground we had to go into the world again.

Besides the Sunday evenings the delegates took part in 24 hours of non stop prayer as part of the Global Call to 24-7 Prayer – a day and night cry for justice. The hall became a prayer room with pillows on the floor, paper to write things down on and candles. Each delegate lit a candle in the beginning of the 24 hours and those candles burned all night so that even though we took turns in praying, we were symbolically all there praying with each other. It was a great experience to pray in the middle of the red light district on a Friday night.

An old attic was transformed into a permanent prayer room which was available for use throughout the four weeks of Find Your Mission. Participants could leave each other messages of encouragement in little envelopes, scratch over a country on the map after they have prayed for it, so in the end the entire world was prayer for and above all have a little silent time with God.


Joyce Barink

Find Your Mission Leadership Team