Thursday, March 11, 2010

Improve your church's prayer ministry in just 20 minutes

Had a brilliant and yet simple idea today on how our prayer ministry could be improved, and wanted to share it with you so that God may be glorified and His people might pray!

Like you probably do, we have a weekly prayer list inserted into our church bulletin. It includes prayer requests for members and others that we know and love who need a touch from God in some way. It includes regular prayer requests for missionaries, for area Lutheran pastors, and for local pastors of other traditions. Finally, it also has a section devoted to praise and thanksgiving for answers to prayer.

So far, so good. Pretty routine prayer list, in all honesty. But this morning as I was typing up Sunday’s prayer list, this small, simple idea was birthed in my head. On the back of the prayer insert I added a space for individuals to write in their personal prayers for the week and another space to record God’s answers to their prayers. This small addition should help people want to keep the prayer list handy, thus allowing them to better incorporate Sunday’s prayers into their lives throughout the week and also make it one small step easier for them to develop a regular and habitual prayer life.

And then, as usually happens with good ideas that come from God, another idea piggybacked onto that one. When I thought about how good it is to recall God’s providence and answers to prayer in our past, I realized how easy it would be to put together a system to do just that. All people would have to do is take our newly modified prayer list with their prayers and God’s answers now written on the back, put it in a folder and voila! Instant prayer journal! Way to go, God!

I’m a bit busy today, but thought this was too much of a God idea to put it off. So I put together a very simple and easy system. I took some regular file folders and glued a cover sheet to the front labeling that folder as a “Our Saviour Prayer Ministry” folder. And then this Sunday I’ll give them out to our members for them to put each week’s prayer list in, and in time they will have developed a long, long list of exactly how God has worked to answer prayers in their lives. God will be glorified, His people will be strengthened, and we’ll all learn to pray even more!

Total time invested this morning in this small, but important improvement in our prayer ministry? 20 minutes, start to finish. Love it when God puts a plan together!

1 comment:

  1. beautiful in its simplicity & its tangible practicality. Don't be surprised if someone borrows God's idea from you!