boy that was fun

Man that was fun.

I'm no Chuck Swindoll, but it sure was fun. The regional council travels to various churches every month to have a time of prayer and worship at that church. It's a time for area pastors to meet and be encouraged and hear what the needs are at that particular church and pray for them.

We met at 9:30 or so and sang songs. Then we took praises and we all prayed. And everybody gets on their knees. Then we took requests and a few women who had come shared requests from the body and for their families. We prayed for this little boy in a wheelchair. We laid hands on these people and prayed for them. I tell you what, the US church could learn a few things about prayer from these Guatemalans. We so often make prayer this stale, formal thing. We worry more about how we sound than to Whom we are praying. And these men and women corporately cry out to the God who hears them. They talk and cry and pour their hearts out before the Living Christ and the Father and the Holy Spirit and it is truly amazing. I wish I could video it but that would somehow cheapen the beauty of it.

So we prayed until 11:15 or so and then took a break where I ate this REALLY good epanada. Wow. And then at 11:30 it was time. So I just did what you do when you preach and teach. There were 25 or so folks there and it was a wonderful interactive time. The Word of God is living and active. Do you know that? It's not some stale book we read from. It's the words of the Living God and man, I tell you, when the Lord is teaching His people, it is an amazing thing to be a part of. I hope you are at a place that really teaches the Bible , at least on some level. In a class or Sunday School or at a home Bible study. Something. Because if you are not interacting with other believers and in community being taught the Bible you are missing out!

So the next meeting is June 2nd and they asked me to teach then as well. I can't wait! It's's a heck of a lot of fun. I can't believe this is my job.


Anonymous said...

I am so stoked for you. We may have to try to arrange a visit to see you guys next summer. Provided we have the resources to make the trip. I love you guys. I am excited that you are serving the Lord and that you are so excited to be used. It has been good following you through your blogs.

Toni said...

I remember Robyn Eubanks teaching me the very same thing about praying; to speak as you are speaking to your Father who knows everything about you and cares for you, to pray as you would normally speak and you are more abt to share your heart.

Anonymous said...

>I tell you what, the US church could learn a few things about prayer from these Guatemalans.<

Have you ever considered the possibility that all churches in the US aren't like the ones you've attended here? I'm excited for your experience. Connecting with God on a heart level *IS* a thing of beauty.

Brandon and Jenny said...

"Have you ever considered the possibility that all churches in the US aren't like the ones you've attended here?"

I didn't mean to paint with so broad a stroke. I have attended Bible, Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, Christian, Episcopal and a semi-Pentecostal name-and-claim church.

I have not experienced all there is: "US Church" is really broad.

What I meant to communicate was that these people prayed out of their suffering, something most US churches experience only peripherally. People suffer all over the world and Americans are not excluded. But people living in the US suffer exponentially less than the majority of the world. Remember that I say these things as an American.

When we read about suffering in the gospels and the New Testament many of us don't even know what it means. Many Americans have lived such comfortable, shielded lives that we have little concept of poverty and countries at war and struggling to have enough to eat or having a sick child and not being able to find medicine for them. These things are commonplace in most of the world.

So when these Guatemalans prayed, they prayed as though God could heal them and provide for them and protect them because they have no other options. It's not that American's don't do this. They do. But the folks I was with, they are, by their circumstances, forced to trust God more directly than many Americans.

And the depth of their trust and the desperateness of their situation makes its way through in their prayers. They trust God more than I do and when they talk to Him, it shows.

I think that Americans can learn more deeply what it means to trust the Lord by spending time with people in 3rd world cultures. Sorry that took so long to say. :-)

Brandon and Jenny said...

Oh, as a side note, please don't comment anonymously. Just, say who you are. I won't get mad. :-)

Mark said...

I think the openness you referenced in their prayer is a sign of their humility before their brethren and God. Most of the rest of us are too vain and proud to put it all out there. I prefer the privacy and anonymity of the confessional myself. It keeps my pride intact.

Brandon and Jenny said...

Great insight, Mark. But that was WAY to open and honest. Leave my pride intact. Hahaha. :-)

cookiehawk77 said...

Isn't it exhilarating to use your gifts and know that God is working through you? I'm so glad you had that opportunity.

I know what you mean about praying so fervently. I think Americans in general are too complacent, think that somehow they are still in control of life. Only when we hit desperation do we realize how weak we are and how much we need God to work in ways we cannot.

Thanks for the reminder of how living the Word of God is. I need to dig into it more regularly and let it change my heart.