After sending out the following email to our church family, it struck me that this might make a good post. Why? Well, it shows positively, how the body of Christ unites to pray for those both within and outside of the flock. This post also exposes, sort of negatively, how lax the church can become when they neglect this most vital of church functions--Church Prayer. Church prayer meetings have suffered devastation over the last (I'm guessing) ten to 25 years. Why? Many reasons, but one would be, simply put, faithlessness. We simply have lost faith in God to DO. Or, worse, we don't care what happens! I know that sounds awful to say. But what other reasons could be more implicit in such a gross neglect? "It is time for judgment to begin at the household of God" (1 Peter 4:17). But, Oh, blessed judgment that forces us to seek grace and power directly from God through Jesus Christ! Amen?
Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working (James 5:13-16).
Brothers and Sisters:
Let’s join with Toni & family in praying for Frank (see below). We’re glad to pray together in unity for the needs within the family. [The details of this request went only to the church. For those unfamiliar with our church, this is one way to enlist the prayers of the family of God, which I trust many churches use]
Last night we enjoyed a wonderful prayer time with our main focus being to pray over Tyler Campbell, per James 5:13-16. The Elders, along with Todd & Angela laid hands on Tyler, prayed first over him, then opened it to everyone else in room. It was a sweet and powerful time as we all were united as one around Tyler. Not a few tears were shed, but good tears. Amazing! We prayed for God to heal Tyler. We did not demand that he do so. God is God.
You truly feel when such times occur that THIS is where you’re supposed to be, and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. I wonder if more of you would ask yourselves why it is that you aren’t in our 5-6:30 Family Prayer Time? Honestly, it is not an exaggeration to say that this is the most important meeting of the week. And I say that as one who loves to study, teach and preach God’s Word! One of our prayers is that more members of the body of Christ (who are able) might see prayer for the serious powerhouse that it is! Remember, Church Prayer is NOT another program of the church, it is what the church does, like lungs are to the body. No breath, no life!
So, what holds you back? Don’t let it.