Praying in Circles of Support

Reflection by Pastor Scott Arnold
FBCLA  -  8/3/2021
31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. (Acts 4:31)  …. (James 5:13-16) 13 Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
            Prayer is a way of life and the act of expressing our faith, petitions, and love for God and each other. Prayer is more than asking God for help, or figuring out a solution to a problem. Prayer is the way we tap into the Holy Spirit. God’s Holy Spirit gives us wisdom, counsel, patience, urgency, guidance, strength, clarity, inspiration, hope, assurance, calm, and peace.  God increases our faith, hope, and love through prayer.  Within the Early Church of the Book of Acts, prayer was instrumental to the Word and Work of God that helped people come to faith, proclaim Jesus, and be vessels to work and witness to the Kingdom of God. When people were in prison, the Church prayed. When people were in trouble, they prayed. When people were sick, the Church prayed.  When they were discouraged, they prayed through singing and praise. When opportunity allowed, they prayed directly with people and applied oil as a sign of faith in God’s healing power.  When people confessed their sins, they forgave them. When people needed God’s grace, they were quick to be gracious. Healing was at the core of the ministry of the Early Church, and it came as God granted His mercy in powerful and effective ways.
         The key for the Church today is like that of the Early Church, we need to be filled and led by God’s Holy Spirit in praise, prayer, and proclamation of Jesus Christ, the Word of God. We are called to develop and sustain “Circles of Support”, that is, friendships, partnerships, small groups, fellowship, and support with prayer as a uniting and strengthening element at the core.
         Pray boldly and patiently for God’s new work in this world, in the Church and in your life.
  • Pastor Scott Arnold   

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