Friday, December 19, 2008

Prayer Request

Editor's Note: I started another blog on the Radiant Magazine website about the 24-7 prayer project I'm working on. I've copied and pasted my latest entry below. (: Oh, and for more information on this movement, check out

I'm sad to say that this is only my second blog post. I hope to flood the blogwaves in the next few weeks. I set out over a month ago to hone in on my journey through 24-7 prayer. But, the last month of school really got the better of me, leaving virtually no time for blogging fun [or for 24-7 prayer planning):]. School is over. Alleluia!

But . . .

. . . today has been racked with emotions. Our launch date for 24-7 prayer is in two short weeks and I am not even close to where I planned to be at this point. I'm really struggling. I want to give it all to God but I don't know exactly how to do that. How do I find the balance between letting God and still completing the proper leg-work?

I want to offer up some prayer requests, but first, let me back up. I suppose an explanation is in order. What is the 24-7 prayer movement, why are we participating and what is the meaning of life?

Okay, the last question may be a little too large in scope for this blog. Let's just stick to the basics.

A couple of years ago, right before I moved to Maryland [near DC] from Charlotte, NC, I came across a book called Red Moon Rising. It turned out to be one of those life changing books that smacks you in the face when you're least expecting it. Author Pete Greig, the founder of this whole crazy sexy cool prayer movement*, details his journey in an amazingly thoughtful and articulate way. I can't pretend that I'll do as good a job as he did, but I'll sum it up as unclumsily as possible.

We all know that the idea of prayer is ancient. You may or may not know that that the concept of praying 24 hours a day 7 days a week nonstop is very old, too. In fact, the most recent example [before this one] began in 1727 with a group of Moravian kids and lasted 125 years! And if you know anything about prayer then I don't have to explain the wonderful miraculous stuff that came out of that movement. It was pretty freaking awesome.

Well, as you may have guessed, God is doing it again. It started in Chichester, England right before the turn of the century. And it's still going strong. Right now, as I type, 72 groups in 16 different countries are immersed in prayer. Pretty cool, huh?

From the moment I heard about 24-7 prayer, I have longed to be a part of it. For the past three years, God has kept the idea lodged in the back of my mind, waiting for the perfect opportunity to push it forward.

And now, the Creator of the universe has done just that. Not only do I get to be a part of a week of 24-7 prayer, I get to help plan and lead it from start to finish. Wow. God is so so good.

But, as big a blessing as this is, I am overwhelmed with feelings of unworthiness and doubt. I fear I may have waited too long and screwed up the planning phase. I am afraid we'll never be able to pull it off now.

My husband, Jermaine, says I have a gift for pointing out the negative. That sucks.

I've been staring at the computer screen for the past couple minutes. I was about to present my prayer requests and I just realized that I didn't fully explain the logistics of how a week of 24-7 prayer works. I can't figure out exactly where to put it, so I've decided to shove it here. Let me know how that works for you.

It's pretty simple, really. It starts with a room. This room you take and you fill with good God things. You keep in mind that God was The Original Artist and so you let your imagination run wild. With prayer and thoughtfulness the room ends up chock full of these sort of things:

  • journals
  • all kinds of paper and art supplies
  • big comfy couches
  • a guitar or a keyboard
  • a huge map of the world
  • candles
  • coffee
  • Nooma videos
  • A Bible
  • books
  • post it notes to write the names of the lost
  • "stations" for confession, intercession, communion, etc . . .
  • toys for children that will evoke thoughtfulness and joy
  • anything else God puts on your heart

While you prepare the room, you simultaneously prepare the people who will fill it. They will be signing up for hour long sessions. So, for example, I'll take 2pm, you'll take 3pm, and so on. And then, we learn about prayer. We study Bible passages on the subject, we read books about prayer [a few of my favorites: God Is Here by Steve Case and The Divine Hours by Phyllis Tickle], and, of course, we pray. We learn that not all prayer puts us on our knees with our eyes closed while we talk toward the ceiling. Poems, music, reading, silence: all of these things can be done while praying, and this is not a complete list, but rather simply a good place to start.

While we learn, momentum starts to build, and so then you bust out the sign up sheet. People are so excited that they practically run to put their names on that piece of paper. And it only gets better once they show up for their appointment with God. A hour in the prayer room seems like ten minutes. People love it so much that they don't want to stop. And so a week becomes two and two weeks becomes a month. It's all so magical!

At least, it was in my head. This is the way I maticulously planned it all out. While I planned. I prayed that God would have his way through this entire process. I must say, his way is not how I would have done things.

But, you know how that goes. It never is, is it?

Here we are two weeks before launch. We haven't created a prayer room [though we do have a room and it does have big comfy couches]. Because of poor planning we had to launch sign up last week without a sign up sheet and needless to say, no one has signed up [well, that's not completely true - I did]. And though I've been studying prayer [and maybe others on an individual level] we haven't had a cohesive study as a congregation about prayer [we did have one small meeting, though, and it went fabulously].

Okay, reading this through, makes me realize that my husband might have been right [I hate it when that happens (:]. He said it probably wasn't as bad as I was making it. And besides, even if we don't fill a week with prayer, it will probably still be more than we have all prayed in a very long time [or perhaps ever]. So, in that sense, it can't "fail".

On that note, I offer up to you my prayer requests. Thank you in advance for your prayers. You can't begin to imagine how much we appreciate them.

Please pray:

  • For me, Jermaine and Dwayne as we lead this project
  • That God completely has his way and gets all the glory
  • For all of the participants, that they will experience true joy while praying
  • That we can fill a week with continuous prayer
  • That we won't get discouraged when it gets difficult
  • That this will be a uniting time for our multi-generational congregation
  • Anything else that God puts on your heart

Again, thank you.

One more thing: if you live in the DC metro area and feel compelled to sign up, then please do! Or, for that matter, if you live far away and want to join us, woo-hoo! We could probably even find you a free place to stay [and, I would lovelovelove to bake you cookies (:].

The week of prayer is set to launch at 2pm on Sunday January 4th and continue until the following Sunday [the 11th] at 2pm. If you want to sign up for anytime during that week, please email me at

And thank you for reading this blog.

*I am so happy that I got to use the words "sexy" and "prayer" in one sentence. Amen.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The List

I am constantly making lists. I'm a lister. Which is different from being a listener. But, I try to be that, too.

I'm done. Oh, praise Jesus, I'm finally done with this wretched semester. A month of freedom [well, sort of [please see the following list]. I wanted to write a blog. And I wanted to make a list of all of the things I want/need to accomplish this winter break. Being multi-tasker by nature, I've decided to combine the two. Before I decided, I was entertaining the idea of making this blog a poem. So, what about a list poem!

We'll see how that goes.

The List

Stuff [mostly nonsensical] fills my head
Keeps me from my bed
And produces within me an unnerving sort of dread.
Why can't I
Still lie
Or is it lay [still]?
I always get confused.
So much to do -
I need to pack.
We are moving down the road
I need to clean, sort and trash my treasures
That are only precious by my measurement.
Our dog needs his shots.
Which reminds me
Our daughter is suffering badly.
the eczema is overwhelming.
It makes both of us cry.
But I tell her that it is going to be just fine
She informs me that, indeed, it is not
Her face is flushed and hot
I fight back razor-sharp feelings of guilt
And kiss her goodnight because
Her slumber eases both our pain.
I push back the shame
Of my past.
And focus on my present list
I must must must get a Maryland Driver's License
I know
It's a little bit ridiculous at this point, right?
I want to write
And spend 4 hours everyday enveloped in the written world.
I'll let you know how that goes.
I'm going to send out as many queries and articles
My little head can muster
Those that don't lack luster.
And use the word "glitter" poignantly
Because I like it.
Christmas cards and cookies
Must make it to the post office by Monday
Just another "Manic Monday
I wish it was Sunday"
Actually I don't
I'm glad to be here
Right now
In this moment
It glitters and bursts forth with possibility.
Oh, how I relish in the possible.
I am, of course, a hopeaholic.
No more meetings, tho.
Everyone needs a vice.
I will keep my hope, thankyouverymuch.
Regardless of whether she says "such and such"
She needs too much.
Or she doesn't need enough.
I can't remember which one.
More thing
to place on my list.
This one is so big it makes me nervous.
A prayer.
And then another
And then another
24 times 7
Equals the equivalent of heaven in the Woods
I will squelch those unhopeful thoughts
That we can't do this
Because we were born to do this.
So there:
A prayer.
A hurting child
Cookies and cards
Oh, I almost forgot presents!
Tis the season [to forget about presents]
Lots of writing
Proof that I live in Merry Land
A clutter-free existence
And one cute cuddly furful Sebastian
Who needs to be shot
In the good way.