A letter from a Richmond Area Pastor...
At the Iron Sharpens Iron conference in Richmond this past March, I talked with one of the seminar leaders about his ideas to help attract and retain men to the men’s ministry in our church. We agreed that the things we both discussed were essentially things we had already tried. I guess he saw the disappointment in my face. He immediately grabbed me by both shoulders, looked me square in the eye, and said, “Brother, what you must do is to just cry out to the Lord in prayer for these men.” Still holding me tightly, he prayed for our church and me. I felt God speak to me through that prayer; I sensed God calling me to prayer in a new way.
The Monday following that Saturday seminar, I began to open the church up for prayer at 6 AM every morning. I have been there without fail, crying out to God, and listening to Him, as well. Others have joined in from time to time, at that special 6 AM hour. We have received:
- a blessing in attendance increase
- new families
- some new men got together on their own and came to us to ask us to do another Men’s Fraternity
- one man who did not previously attend, came to join his wife in church
- the return of a man who had not been in our church for over a year
- an extended family reconciled from an internal dispute that once looked hopeless to them
- persons stepping up in our services and sharing their testimonies and praising God for working in their lives
- a fresh presence of God’s spirit in our services
To say the least, we continue to stand in awe of God and how He honors His word and promises so faithfully, “who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.” (Eph. 3:20 NIV)