[Part Two] Defining The Main Difference Between a House of Prayer and a Traditional Church

Convergence House of Prayer

It’s always enjoyable to discuss the House of Prayer reality with good friends over a great lunch. That is exactly what happened last week. I shared our history of moving more intentionally from a ministry focused church to an intimacy focused church. There were lots of great questions as my friends were exploring this reality for their own ministry.

A few months ago I created two simple diagrams that show, what I would consider to be, the main difference between a House of Prayer reality and a more traditional approach to church. I would propose the House of Prayer model as a growing redefinition of “doing” church.

Difference Makers

There are two things that really stand out as difference-makers in a house of prayer reality.

  1. All life and ministry flows out of the Prayer Room.
  2. Occupational Intercessory Missionaries staff the Prayer Room.

Regarding the first distinction, “all life and ministry flows from the Prayer Room”, I put together a simple graphic that I think might help leaders.

Traditional Church:


House of Prayer:


In the more traditional structure we see the weekends as being the “main event”. The weekends are the benchmark to church life and success. While I’m sure this does not apply to all churches I would venture to say that it is true of most.

A House of Prayer structure sees the Prayer Room as the “main event” . The benchmark of success is found in those going deep in God and interceding on behalf others. Ministry flows from the Prayer Room. So then, are the weekends important in the House of Prayer reality? A huge YES! But it’s not THE number one priority.

The Great Omission

While running with the Great Commission there has been a Great Omission. In our fervency to evangelize we have assumed that people are going deep in God. This is not so.

As I approach almost 30 years of full-time ministry it still amazes me that the number one problem believers have is knowing how to go deep in God and have a vibrant relationship with Jesus. In fact, my “How to Love God” series is still far and away the most sought out posts on this blog. People realize that there is a gap and are trying to fill it.

The Great Commandment

There is a reason that Jesus stated the first commandment first. It’s first because Jesus knows this is how we are designed to truly live. If it ceases being first then it’s a matter of time before we eventually burnout, walk-away or self-destruct.

Luke 10:27 “And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”

If we ignore intimacy WITH God then we begin to do ministry FOR God. Ultimately, ministry moves from a GET TO to a HAVE TO. There is life beyond faithfulness, it’s called fulness. Fulness is God’s dream for us!

Ephesians 3:19 “and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”

The Great Commission is never to be preached at the expense of the Great Commandment. It’s as if we have convinced ourselves that it is one or the other. It’s actually both.

The Great Commission and the Great Commandment were always meant to be married. The two becoming one. Yet the priority is to keep growing in the knowledge of God as we do ministry with God.

The House of Prayer reality is an intentional attempt to keep this priority.

Questions: Love to get your thoughts on this. Please take time and add your comment below.

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Series Navigation<< [Part Three] Defining The Main Difference Between A House Of Prayer And A Traditional Church: His Worth and Outcomes12 Key Steps That Helped Us Successfully Converge The Local Church With The House of Prayer >>
Greg Simas
Greg is the Founder and Senior Leader of Convergence House of Prayer, Husband, Father, Pastor and Writer. He is married to his wife Wendi, and have three amazing children and four grandchildren. Greg lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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  1. Love this PG – you nailed it!!!!

  2. Great illustrations…Ho Chow conversation was awesome! So challenged.

    1. Definitely had a great time. Love to do it again. Here’s to stretching the way we think about the we should “do” church!! We don’t have to default to the way we have always done it. I believe God is doing a new thing! Blessings!

  3. Pastor Greg, I’m new to the house. Once (onsite) at noon during a Nina Landis set (amazing, loving, moving). And I’ve listened to all your recordings at You’re style is so easy, down-to-earth and inspiring. I had asked the Lord for resources to learn more and He has answered. Thanks again for your blog, recordings and ministry.

    1. Teresa,

      Thanks for all the kind words. I’m so glad you are taking the time to attend the Prayer Room, listen to the podcasts and read the blog. I pray that the Lord continues to give you understanding as you pursue Him. Hope to see you sometime in the future either in the Prayer Room or at our cHOP services. Blessings to you.

  4. Hi Greg,
    It’s Julie, one of your old youth group kids all grown up. 🙂 I somehow stumbled upon this and am so excited to hear what you’re doing! Would love to hear more! The house of prayer has become hugely significant in my life and am so excited when I hear about others who value this Biblical model and recognize the power in it! Can’t wait to explore your blog and learn more from your insights!

    1. Hi Julie,

      Yes, I TOTALLY remember you. Yes, definitely all grown up. Super pleased you came across the blog and that the HOP is so significant in your life. Tell me what you are doing and how the HOP is impacting you. Love to hear! I will be adding more about the HOP in future posts! Again, give me a quick update! Blessings and Favor!

      1. Quick will not be easy…I’m in India now, overseeing a little but growing indigenous worship movement. We are training worship leaders and planting urban youth churches out of faith that Amos 9:11-14 is for real and that day and night worship and prayer, really does produce supernatural harvest. Before coming to serve in India, I was involved in starting a HOP in the city I was living in. I will definitely have to stop by next time I am stateside. Would love to experience what Jesus is doing your midst!

        1. Love it Julie. Wow. I get super encouraged when those we ministered to in High School are doing things like this. I will be in prayer with and for you as you guys serve the Lord by training worship leaders in a night and day HOP reality. And when you come stateside make sure you look us up so we can meetup and hear what God is doing! Blessings!

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