The photos in this post are not good . . .but this post is about much more than photos. This post is about prayer. I am so thankful that I believe in the power of prayer. I am so thankful that I believe in God who answers prayers. I do know that sometimes the answer is yes, sometimes the answer is no and sometimes the answer is wait a while. I also know that sometimes when I pray, God weeps with me. That is so comforting. I've mentioned before that I love my job. I have a love/hate relationship with part of my job . . .the prayer ministry for our church. I love it because God hears and answers prayer. I hate it (only sometimes) because I hear about all the sick people and little kids who have cancer and people who are getting a divorce and all of those things that make up our messy lives. . . .yet I also love that I have the awesome privilege to pray for these needs. See, it really is a love/hate relationship.
On this day back at the end of October, I was able to see prayer in action. October is our stewardship month and early in the morning on the day before our big "Celebration Sunday" about forty of us gathered in our sanctuary. Rev. Suzanne talked to us for a minute and shared some ways that we could pray and then she opened our time with prayer. We then spread out over the sanctuary and through the building to Wesley Hall (where our contemporary service is held). We "laid hands" on each pew and we prayed for those who would be sitting there on Sunday morning. Then we wrote something like, "I prayed for you" on a sticky note and stuck it to the pew. We prayed that those sitting there on Sunday would experience God's blessings. We prayed for their families and their spouses. We prayed for our church and that we would indeed be about God's business. There were enough of us that people were able to pray up in the choir loft and people prayed over the "preacher's chair." Oh my goodness . . .when you have 40 or 50 people praying in a room . . .God's spirit is present. As I moved through the balcony, I prayed for my mother-in-law and for Mark's Uncle John who sit in the same pew each week. I prayed for others by name as I pictured them in my mind. You know that most of us are such creatures of habit that we sit in the same general area of the sanctuary each week.
God is at work at Trinity UMC. Yes, HE is. Our pledge campaign is successful . . . commitment cards are still trickling in (if you are reading this and haven't turned in your card, please do so!! haha! I couldn't resist that "commercial") We are in ministry here at Trinity - along with many of you in your home churches - we are doing God's work.
Here is a picture of our senior minister and his wife kneeling at the altar praying for the congregation. I think that is important for folks to know - in a church of over 3,000 members, the senior minister takes the time from his busy schedule to get on his knees. (I apologize for the picture - I was trying to be discreet - no flash, etc.) (and yes, Dawn has on orange and blue - War Eagle)
Here is a picture of the sanctuary as folks are praying.
On days like that Saturday . . .I am so thankful to be a part of the prayer ministry at Trinity. I am so thankful to be a part of a church family who believes in the power of prayer. I am so thankful to be a part of Trinity UMC!!