Thursday, August 09, 2007

Family and Friends/Old and New Part Three

This past Sunday was a real treat for us. We traveled to Pittsfield, IL to serve at Calvary Baptist Church pastored by our friend Bill Herald. It was great to see Bill and Phylis again. I first met Phylis on a pastors' wives e-mail group 11 years ago. Each has been there for the other many times since that first e-mail exchange.

After Sunday School we walked into the sanctuary and were greeted by my schoolgirl friend, Patricia. Look back in the archives and you will see many memories from my childhood include Patricia (aka Patty and Purple). Oh—it was so good to see her, and her hubby, Don! They scooted over in a pew, and I suddenly felt like we were teenagers again.

After the kids performed their Vacation Bible School wrap-up program, I sang "I Will Listen," originally performed by Twila Paris. And then Russ preached a great sermon that spotlighted the value of children (to go along with the VBS program). The title was "Unnamed Masterpiece." At the close of the service Bill collected a love offering for us, (which was NOT expected, but very much appreciated). He sent us to the foyer doorway to allow the congregation to greet us, and called the deacon of the week up to close in prayer. The deacon suggested they have a special prayer service for us, for God to open and close doors for us as we pursue a new ministry (Russ would LOVE to pastor again). So, we walked back down to the front of the church, and all the deacons and wives, and Bill and Phylis gathered around us, laid hands on us, and prayed for us, that Russ will soon receive a call to pastor. It was such a surprise for a deacon to care that much for someone he had just met. He had no way to know just how special this would be for us.

Bill told us that when this congregation prays, they GET results. Not that they have a hotline to God or anything, but they pray in faith, trusting God for the outcome. The church also has a prayer chapel and individuals sign up to pray for an hour, using the prayer cards provided by the church to prompt them to recall the needs of the church and the members.

No comments: