I love this time of year for several reasons. One of the reasons is that our church is in the middle of “14 Days of Prayer” right now. This is one of two times we come together to pray collectively. We observe this special prayer time twice each year: once in January and again in August.
The significance of emphasizing prayer at these times is of course, with January, it’s the beginning of a new year, and in August we begin a new school year.
The most powerful part of this practice of collective prayer is SEEING all the prayers physically. You see, the church lays out bunches and bunches of different colored Post-it Notes (and pens) at the altar and around the back of the auditorium.
For these special times, whiteboards are hung, lining the walls of the auditorium, and we are encouraged to grab a Post-it Note and pen, write a prayer request on the note and then attach it to a white board. This goes on evening after evening for 14 days!
As the days go by, it becomes more and more impactful to see all the different prayer requests as signified by many colorful little sticky notes plastered all over the white boards. We stopped and read some last Sunday. . . One person wrote that they are addicted to sugar and would like prayer to break that addiction. Many people spoke of the need for prayer for mental health concerns in their families; cancer of relatives and friends; loved ones who had been in car accidents or were in need of surgery.
As heartbreaking as it is to see what others are struggling with, it is equally empowering to know that we serve a God who is all powerful, who loves us beyond measure and who hears and answers prayer. 1 John 5:14-15