Caryville, TN – The Stand in the Gap Coalition (SIGCO) is planning a unique and massive prayer walk on Saturday, November 8th 2014, inviting East Tennessee to Stand At The Cross. The Prayer Walk is being planned to take place at 12 noon off exit 141 and I-75, near Caryville, TN, where the group will make their way to one of Jim Potters 100 foot crosses which welcomes travelers to Tennessee.
SIGCO represents nine (9) East Tennessee counties spreading from Hawkins to Scott and Fentress Counties who are fighting Tennessee drug epidemic on their knees. Additionally, Bell County, Kentucky and Lee County, Virginia round out the total eleven (11) county SIGCO effort. Churches of all denominations are crossing denominational lines to ask Gods help to eradicate the scourge of Drug/Alcohol Abuse and Family Violence in our region.
Independently, small prayer groups of the parents and friends of those addicted have outgrown places they met. There are prayer walks around court houses, justice centers, on school property at night and other unusual places.
Spurred by a prayer revival that brought transformation to Clay County Kentucky and drew a film crew from Washington state which created a documentary called Appalachian Dawn, the prayer movement has grown, but also its results.
[pullquote]If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.2[/pullquote]
In 2011, Stand in the Gap Coalition (SIGCO) was formed and planned a large prayer walk from Virginia, Kentucky, and Lincoln Memorial University (LMU) in Tennessee, where an estimated 8,000 people converged in Cumberland Gap, TN Prayers and testimonies were heard from recovered addicts who now have their lives under control.
In 2012, representatives from 9 counties began to meet regularly under the regional banner of the Stand in the Gap Coalition. While some smaller Prayer walks and events took place throughout the year, on November 4th an estimated 20,000 people walked through 7 towns supported by neighboring counties who didn’t plan walks.
Dan Spurlock, spokesman for SIGCO, headquartered in Cumberland Gap, says, “There has never been a more important time in our nation and specifically our Tri-State area, for Christians and concerned Citizens to take a stand against “Illicit/Illegal” drug abuse. We are literally watching generations of our families waste away to dangerous and life threatening drugs. Great Grandparents are raising children as the child’s parents and Grand Parents are lost to Drug and Alcohol Abuse.”
2014 will mark the first public prayer walk since 2012, but SIGCO advocates have been busy continually with new involvement in their communities. Since the beginning of the prayer efforts, Drug recovery programs are cropping up all over, drug courts are beginning to be accepted additions to each counties justice system and unified efforts are taking place to find long-term recovery for those who are ready to find freedom from their addictions.
In Hawkins County, Judge Todd Ross organized their first graduation with approximately 250 people attending. The graduation was held in a school with inflatables filling the gym, a band playing in the auditorium and food, cotton candy, snow cones, and graduation cake offered to those attending.
While traveling, Spurlock saw the giant 100 ft cross, overshadowing I-75, and believed this site to be very significant for a future SIGCO event. He contacted Mr. Potter and gained permission to use this area and land for the forthcoming the prayer walk.[pullquote]And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.3[/pullquote]
Churches throughout East Tennessee, are urged to begin planning now to bring vans, buses, and lots of cars filled with members who can participate. Denomination isnt important, as Spurlock feels this Walk to the Cross is history-in-the-making and could be the beginning of a revival that could be felt across our nation.
Just 200 years ago across the mountain in Kentucky was a 6 day revival, attended by 20,000 people in a sparsely populated frontier area but out of which a transformation took place which impacted the nation. It was called the famous Cain Ridge Revival of 1801 and none other than Daniel Boone took a big part in organizing it. Many pastors feel it is time to see that kind of change take place once again.
SIGCO has chapters in Anderson County, Bell County (KY), Campbell County, Claiborne County, Grainger County, Hancock County, Hawkins County, Fentress County, Lee County (VA), Scott County, Union County.
1. Press Release Submitted by Sheldon Livesay
2. 2 Chronicles 7:14
3. Ezekiel 22:30