|Prayer Vigil picture courtesy of Julie Commander|
This is a picture of the prayer altar prepared by Jon and Julie Commander of our church. Jon had left a notebook giving instructions on how to begin the vigil. He had written poignantly, "Prayer through Open Doors..." "Open the eyes of my heart Lord, I want to see you."... "As you speak to God remember that the Holy Spirit will help you say just the right thing..." As I turned the page I found that he had written a prayer for the congregation, and I had heard someone say that reading a prayer counts as saying it. Whew! The pump was primed, so I turned the page and found a notice about next weekend's Back to Church Sunday. The next page, a list of the children in our church to pray for and our influence on their spiritual growth. The next eight pages were filled with prayers from the congregation pouring their hearts out to God. I read each prayer, re-lifting it up to God. And finally, it was my turn to bring my prayers to the altar, and I picked up the magic markers and began to bare my heart:
Who among us with any heart doesn't feel like Sham Wow for other people's oil spills?
You inhabit the praises of your people and now I express my gratitude for your most recent answer to my angst filled prayer. I told you how the voices of men had made me afraid to pray, you know like "God make me humble" and then someone tells a story about how your house will burn down. And I asked you why I would want to give such a wonderful God all my crappy fear and terror. And you whispered into my heart that if I gave you the ENERGY that went into fear, terror and worry, that you would sanctify that ENERGY and make it into something that blessed the Kingdom.
in your light,
in your wisdom
And help us hear
above all other voices
Including our own...
And by the time I added a personal family prayer, and prayer for the church...I looked up and an hour and seven minutes had gone by. I had done it, gotten lost in prayer for more than an hour. Next time, I hope the children will come and draw prayer pictures to God.
It was an honor to write this blog...~Jill Davis