Recently, I have read the report of how several ministers, both men and women pray for their local congregation…..One thing I find amazing is that some ministers admit they struggle carving out a period of time to pray for the church. Some of you know the name Eugene Peterson – who paraphrased the Bible into what we call The Message said that in his first ministry his job description didn’t even include the word PRAYER….
It is clearly a part of the minister’s task to give himself to prayer for his flock. In this age of activism, of programs and meetings and drives, it is easy to by-pass this activity which is to be performed largely in secret. But the ministers who neglect this function, together with their congregations, will pay a very high price.
J.R. Briggs, who lives in Pennsylvania said that in this season of prayer, God is leading him to pray in 4 ways…..I liked his take on this so I’m including it in our E-News this week….
1. For deep hunger. Over 250 years ago, Nicholas von Zinzendorf challenged the Moravians to “fend off Luke warmness.” I’m praying for deep devotion and commitment to hunger after God, to know him more, and to grow to love God’s Word.
2. For joy in prayer. If prayer is drudgery we will find every excuse not to pray. But if we experience joy in prayer it will drive us to pray more. God has a track record of blessing and honoring a praying church.
3. For unity. As Paul challenged the church in Ephesus to make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through peace, I long for our church to comprehend that we are a part of one body and Spirit, called to one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father.
4. That we would be pipes, not buckets. God has poured so much into us in his grace and mercy. I am praying that we wouldn’t keep this grace and mercy to ourselves, but that we would pour it out into others.
As you pour over these statements – I am praying the Holy Spirit will use them to bring Discovery into a season of prayer that will end in REVIVAL. Revival means “call back to life” – and we will see a revival of commitment followed by a revival of soul salvation.
Food For Thot
· Give God what’s right — not what’s left.
· Man’s way leads to a hopeless end — God’s way leads to an endless hope.
· Don’t put a question mark where God puts a period.
· When praying, don’t give God instructions — just report for duty.
· We don’t change God’s message — His message changes us.
· The Core Team give great thought to what we can do as a Church Family to a) for us to get on people’s land, and b) to get the people of our community on our land. We had an exchange of ideas at the Team meeting Sunday night. Tuesday, I brought the idea to the Prayer Team that meets in the church foyer — this is what we heard – 1. Go to a subdivision – go at least 2xw – knock on doors saying “We are from Discovery Church on Mexico Gravel Road and we’d like to ask – is there anything going on in your family, your work, your life, for which we could pray?” 2. Go west from the church toward the A-Frame a couple block away… asking neighbors – “how can we serve you” — 3. Here this…..Doug called the Columbia Transit Company asking them it was possible to put a bus-stop close to our church? If it materializes we’d look for volunteers to provide coffee – cookie – water – starting with 1 morning a week….The Transit Company told Doug that we need to go through the 3rd ward councilman and might have an answer by the end of summer…..
· April 28 will be the next ForColumbia work day – and the Team agreed Discovery would be involved again. WE are not aware of where we’ll serve but as we get closer – I’ll promote this in E-News.
· We received a notice from the Boone County Office of Emergency Management asking if they might use our facility to present a 1 – 2 hour presentation of safety and security in houses of worship.
· Our granddaughter Ruby- been ill for 48 hours – seems better today – but would appreciate your prayers for her
· Kristen Steelman is recovering from the Flu over the weekend
· Mrs. Baker’s daughter – (Eva) has A-Fib and several other issues afflicting her now
· Kirsten Yoder – with the NAVY – on the Ship going toward the Winter Olympics which is close to North Korea and the Rocket Man…Safety
· Those who are using the Blessing Box will develop a hunger for the Bread of Life
· As we consider ways to get people on our land and to get on their land – God will give us wisdom – knowledge – and a passion to bring them in. Maybe you are thinking of the old hymn Bring Them In Who’ll go and help this Shepherd kind, help Himthe wandering ones to find? Who’ll bring the lost one to the fold, where they’l be sheltered from the cold? Bring them in, bring them in, bringthem in from the fields of sin; bring them in, bring them in, bring the wandering ones to Jesus.
Believing PRAYER is so essential to what occurs for Jesus, the Kingdom and Discovery – we will be starting another prayer ministry in the new future…….at the end of the message – the prayer warriors will be dismissed to respective stations. At the back of the auditorium.
1. Church will officially conclude
2. I will state who is at the prayer stations – plan is to have 1 lady and 1 gentlemen and the ladies will pray with ladies and the men with men.
3. Those who would — we would like to remain in the auditorium, praying.
4. As those who choose to exit the auditorium please do so as quiet as you can – respecting those praying…
Discovery from the outset has been a New Testament Church – meaning we look to the Book of Acts to determine what is essential – and what is not as far as practices of the church is concerned….Acs 2:42 – they preached the Bible – the prayed – they took the Lord’s Supper – and they fellowshipped… The early church shared the Lord’s Supper each week….
The Lord’s Supper is available each time we gather – but what about when we are ill or hospitalized and can’t be at the service…..? Please – Please call Vern Johnson — several have been trained to serve the Lord’s Supper to shut-ins – and we hope you will sense the spiritual blessing of partaking each week….his phone is 573-881-6293
As you enter the foyer next weekend for our Celebration Services – you will notice an empty Cardboard Box on the East Wall……this box is designed to be a Care Package for Kristen Yoder. Please consider bringing these items…..Letters from Home —- Beef Jerky — Bag of favorite candy — raw nuts —- and Granola Bars….
The word is out about our Blessing Box- we cannot keep food in it…..There is nothing but good news regarding the Blessing Box – A) your generosity allows food to be available when needed B) our community knows we are stocking it every other day and are using it – C) our approach is this – one we put the food in the box – lock the door –it is in God’s hands – and He know – He sees the next move – and we trusts Him that all the glory is His…..
SIDE BAR —- Doug pushed the trash depository to the road last week – filled the box Wednesday – when he came to the church Friday – whoever used the box also pushed the trash depository back up to the church door…We see that as a big Thank You — this coupled with the thank-you note inside the box a month ago – is such a great encouragement for us….Hope you will bring some non-perishables in a sack this weekend….
Passage to study next week — 1 Pet 5:6-11 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. 7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. 8 Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. 9 Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers[a] all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.
10 In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation. 11 All power to him forever! Amen.