“God’s command to ‘pray without ceasing’ is founded on the necessity we have of his grace to preserve the life of God in the soul, which can no more subsist one moment without it, than the body can without air.”
– John Wesley
Prayer is our way of communicating with God. There are many ways we experience the power of prayer – both individually and corporately.
During Vacation Bible School last month, more than 200 children wrote prayers on colorful paper hands to be delivered to church member Brendan Morton and his friend Patrick Sams, who are recovering from severe burns in the burn unit at Grady Hospital.
Each of us participates in corporate prayers in the life of the church in other ways – from the prayers we hear and recite each week during worship services and Sunday School classes to the “40 Days of Prayer” in May and June when we shared prayers via social media for the clergy transitions and specifically for Pastor Sondra, Pastor Charley, and the North Georgia Conference.
Prayer is so important not only because it connects us to God, but because it connects us to one another. It makes us care more deeply about one another.
Did you know that JCUMC has a specific Prayer Ministry? This group is comprised of 20-25 church members whose mission is to pray – regular and intentional prayers for specific people and for specific situations. Laura Marcy, a long-time member of this group, shared a behind-the-scenes look at this powerful ministry. This group feels like such a vital part of her that she can’t even recall how long she’s been a part of it.
Here are some of the things that Laura shared about this ministry:
• A recent prayer list was 3 pages with 69 names plus 12-15 homebound members. It included church members, as well as family and friends of church members.
• There are several ways to add someone to the prayer list – entering the information on the church website, dropping a completed prayer card in the offering plate during Sunday worship (prayer cards are located on the back of the pews), or contacting one of the clergy or a member of the prayer team.
• It’s so important that members let the church know whenever someone needs prayer, a call, or a hospital visit. It’s so easy for folks to fall between the cracks, and we want to be there for you.
• The prayer list is continuously updated and distributed each week to the prayer team plus our clergy. These folks pray daily for each person on the list.
• Upon request, the team sends note cards to those on the list. They also send notes to those who are homebound.
• After someone has been on the prayer list for four weeks, someone makes contact to determine how the person is doing and whether they should remain on the list.
Prayer is one of the truest signs of disciples of Jesus Christ. Laura reflects that it’s so important that people know that they are being prayed for. She adds that it helps us to be connected as a church to pray for one another.