August 3, 2012

Prayers from the Pews

I'd seen some posts about this book before the release and then read several reviews after the release as a Kindle book.  I was impressed and intrigued as I've been reading Terri Lynne for a while and always learn something from her writing.  God has used her writing to teach me a lot in fact.

I think it was last week when someone posted on facebook that the book was available for free that day so I snatched it up (or down?) for my Kindle.  (It's only $4.99 now)    And during my morning quiet/devotional time I've been reading it... pondering, praying, absorbing.  This small book is just amazing so far. 

Yesterday I reached 56% done (that is just how Kindle measures things - I have no idea if it translates into real pages or not).  This is the part of the book where it begins to be prayers for our church - God's church - The Bride of Christ ... all based on scripture in the book of Acts.

Yesterday I prayed this page:
"And the congregation of those who believed were of one heart..." ~Acts 4:32 NASB

Lord, we pray our faith fellowship will be bound with one heart - a heart that seeks You, is passionate for You, longs for You alone.  As we grow in one heart for You, fill us with great love and compassion for one another as well.  Cause us to lay down our own agendas, plans, and desires.  Let them be replaced with humility and love that places others ahead of ourselves.  May we be so consumed with loving and serving that people know it can only be explained by You. Amen.

And today was this and it just took my breath away:
"And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit..." ~Acts 4:2

Lord, we pray that Your church will be filled with the Holy Spirit.  God, that we will be guided by the Teacher and Counselor You have sent to us.  We ask that Your Spirit fill us with the fruit that only comes from You - love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.   We pray that , as Your beloved Bride, we will be a radiant picture of Your love for teh world around us.  Keep us, O Lord, from arrogance, competition, and strife between other congregations.  Cause us to walk in one mind, be of one heart, and be ever guided by one Spirit. Amen.

I know that in Christ there are no accidents... nothing passes through my life that is not part of what He has allowed for me.  This book came just now for me because it was the time I needed it most.  Terri Lynne shares her personal journey of hurts and joys in church during the first part of the book and even though I have not walked the same journey, I found much that resonated with my heart and life.  She writes with kindness about difficult things and shares honestly without being harsh at all. 

I look forward to praying through the rest of this book - for my own church body and the Body of Christ world-wide.  She is a wounded and wandering Bride in many places and only Christ's loving touch will restore her and make her ready for the time when He comes to bring her home.

Blessings on the journey~                                                                 Photo credit: & stock images