pre-service prayer

You 25

When does a church with prayer become a church of prayer? When can we say, “We are a church of prayer!” — How does one measure that?

  • A measurement might be when we notice in ourselves and in each other that we are thinking of prayer without being reminded to. That nudge of the Spirit, that inner call.

  • A measurement might be when we notice we are praying without being asked to and we are seeing others do the same. In all kinds of gatherings, groups, and one-on-ones it would seem strange to not be praying.

  • A measurement might be when we see we are more quickly moving towards prayer as an instinctual response and others are doing this also. Something happens and the call goes out, “Let’s stop everything and pray…”

  • A measurement might be when we notice we are less self-conscious about prayer and much more aware of GOD than ourselves. I think we would see old praying with young, and young praying with old and peer to peer and group to group and no one would use disclaimers.

  • A measurement might be when we begin to listen for GOD to speak to us and to look for answers that come from Him and we see others doing that too. We would be hearing about it.

  • A measurement might be the change we see! When GOD’s people are praying then change is literally in the air. When GOD’s people are praying there is a visible movement and measurable results from it.

  • A measurement might be how, through a new confidence gained in prayer, we come alive in our faith, hope, resilience, freedom, and the practicing of our gifts.

I don’t know what more to say — there is more to see than say, I think. To witness. One thing I know: until we witness that “constant” of prayer, the nail — the call to pray — needs to be hit over and over and over again. We need to learn this. We need to learn the faithful walk of prayer and not slip into a malaise.

So right now we are praying for pre-service prayer to be a solid place of prayer. Twenty five who won’t give up praying Sunday mornings at 9 am. It isn’t a magical time slot, and it probably isn’t even an indication of what prayer will be down the road for our church, but right now…we need to get one thing down with some steadiness and stubbornness.

We are praying for you 25.

PS. Right now we are at a pretty steady 15. Come on Disciples, Followers of Jesus, let’s do this. 9 am, Portable, Every Sunday. Kids are welcome to come play while we pray. Interruptions are allowed!

Teresa Klassen

Teresa Klassen

 

When Everyone Was In On It

Is anyone still surprised that time flies? We comment on it repeatedly as if it suddenly sped up: “Can you believe it is the middle of October?” Actually, I can’t believe it! How can it be the middle of October already?!

I find myself looking at the day and all the hours in it and then suddenly there are no more hours and I have hardly made a dent in all that needed to be done. That is sobering isn’t it? I think in the larger picture, it is even more disquieting. Not only do I want to make a dent on my list but more importantly, I want to make a dent in life. I want to accomplish some things of significance; I especially want to live with significance.

And yet in all this chasing, the very thing, the key, I rush past. Do you?

D. L. Moody once said, “Next to the wonder of seeing my Saviour will be, I think, the wonder that I made so little use of the power of prayer.”

There’s a life regret. I am so thankful for this mentor from the past who urges us in the present to do better!

There was a time when people really understood the place of prayer. I am not saying they did this perfectly, but there was a time when people did not brush past it. In the first chapter of Luke, for example, we read how “all the assembled worshipers were praying outside.” Community Prayer was a familiar and urgent practice.

In some ways, I think prayer has become awkward in the way that talking has become awkward. With our cellphones attached to our eyeballs, we don’t need to say words out-loud. Why was praying together once so natural and now so foreign, I wonder?

Jeremiah 6:16 calls out to us!

This is what the LORD says:
"Stand at the crossroads and look;
ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is,
and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.
But you said, 'We will not walk in it.'…”

Ouch.

We must get back to praying together, because the Lord our God has called His house to be a house of prayer.

We have pre-service prayer at 9 am every Sunday in the portable. It is not an adequate amount of prayer for a church who doesn’t just want to be a church WITH prayer but a church OF prayer, but it is something we are stubborn about getting right; would you come and be stubborn with us?

We do our best to make prayer user friendly — written out prayers for those who want this, easy to follow instructions, creative approaches, we change things up so it doesn’t get “old”.

We do our best to make prayer user friendly — written out prayers for those who want this, easy to follow instructions, creative approaches, we change things up so it doesn’t get “old”.

If you are new to this, don’t be anxious. No one prays really well; can any of our homemade words impress God? We are all learning at pre-service prayer so we do our best to make prayer user friendly. Prayer is just ordinary words from ordinary people that God does extraordinary things with, but if you are concerned about your ordinary words, we also provide a “Prayer Assistant” with prayers you can read until you see that your plain words are just fine.

Got kids? We don’t even mind for a second the noise they make. We can pray louder.

Wouldn’t be amazing if everyone was in on prayer so that we would need to find more and more times to accommodate more and more people who wanted to pray?

“Then if my people who are called by my name
will humble themselves and pray
and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways,
I will hear from heaven
and will forgive their sins
and restore their land.”
2 Chronicles 7:14

There are some “ancient paths” we need to get back to in order to walk the path ahead. John Wesley once said, “God does nothing but by prayer, and everything with it.” Let’s not let time just fly, let’s grab it and stop and pray together and see what God will do.

*Photo credit: Faith Peters

Teresa Klassen

Teresa
Klassen