Semarak Intensive

by Stephanie James

PenHOP has, for many years, been interceding for East Malaysia. In the beginning of 2015, we met as a house of prayer to hear the Lord together on His heart for East Malaysia, and – appropriate to our call to come alongside the local church for the prayer movement – to ask Him of how to partner with Him in what He desires to do there. One of the things that was laid upon the hearts of our leaders was to run an intensive in East Malaysia with the intention of raising up and sending forth forerunners who will proclaim the return of Christ.

After months of prayer and seeing divine connections happen, a small team from PenHOP made their way to Miri, Sarawak and met up with a group of youth leaders from various local churches in September 2015. From that meeting, a common theme was heard: the time was ripe for a house of prayer to be birthed in Miri.

The PenHOP team found themselves in Miri again for a second trip six months later, this time to run an intensive from 16 March to 18 March called Semarak Intensive* which was co-organized by Cornerstone Community Church and the youth of Sidang Injil Borneo (SIB), Canada Hill. There were about 80 participants which consisted of senior pastors, elders, intercessors and youths from different churches in Miri and even from Kuching. The PenHOP team had the privilege of laying the foundations of prayer and worship through teachings, workshops, and worship sessions – all in the context of birthing a house of prayer in Miri while at the same time, imparting the DNA of the prayer movement to the local body of Christ. The presence of God and His word marked and gripped many hearts across generations and denominations with the desire for unity in the body.

This intensive left an indelible mark on the lives of the Mirians. Two days after the intensive, a group of pastors and youths from both Cornerstone Community Church and SIB Canada Hill had their first ever meeting with the PenHOP team (they ended up becoming the core members of Miri House of Prayer, or MYYHOP). While the PenHOP team returned the following Tuesday to Penang to anchor the weekly Prayer Room sets, MYYHOP met for the first time in history and since then has been gathering in various churches every alternate Tuesdays.

Photo: The Semarak Team.

Photo: The Semarak Team.

*On that first trip to Miri, while the PenHOP team met up with the youth leaders, the word "semarak" was put upon the heart of one of our leaders. As he looked up the meaning of the Malay word, he found out that when used as a noun, it is defined as “glory”, or “splendor”. These terms are consistent to what PenHOP and the leaders in Miri had discerned regarding the move of the Holy Spirit there. Thus, after prayerfully seeking the Lord about it, the PenHOP team decided on branding the intensive as Semarak Intensive.

(If you are in Miri and would like to get connected with MYYHOP, feel free to drop us an email or send us a message via Facebook.)