One definition of community is a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals. In this modern age it seems that individualism and autonomy is the proclaimed anthem. Humans are relational beings; we have been created with a need for fellowship and relationship, with each other and most importantly, with our Creator God. We do not need to live life insulated from those around us; I would even say that to do so is detrimental to our existence.
My life is no different than anyone else’s; busy juggling different responsibilities and trying to keep priorities in balance. So when unexpected trials enter our lives it throws everything into chaos. These are the moments that the LORD uses the community of faith that surrounds you to lift you up when you do not have the strength to do it yourself. Recently I have experienced this very thing first hand and believe that I have a responsibility to proclaim the Truth of how the Lord is working in my life. The following text is the testimony I gave at my church on March 24th, 2019. May the LORD us it as an encouragement to those who are going through trials and to those who faithfully lift up their brothers and sisters before the LORD in prayer.
“I wanted an opportunity to give testimony & thanks to the LORD for the work He has done in my life this week. I am so blessed to be a part of a church family that prays for each other. Sometimes I think we trivialize prayer, that it is seen as a lesser tool in our Spiritual toolbox; but I would like to testify to the power that your prayers have had in my life this week.”
“Last Saturday afternoon I called an ambulance to my mother’s house as she was having symptoms of a stroke. I then spent the next 3 days at the hospital and another 4 days at my mother’s house. In the many moments when the lack of sleep and the stress of the situation caused me to barely find the strength to pray; the Holy Spirit led me to this simple phrase which I repeated often, “Lord, hear the prayers of your people who pray on my behalf. Hear their prayers!”
“So, if you prayed for my mom’s healing; He heard your prayer.”
“If you prayed for me to have the LORD’s strength; He heard your prayer.”
“If you prayed for me to have wisdom and discernment; He heard your prayer.”
“If you prayed for me to have rest and peace in the presence of the LORD, He heard your prayer.”
“If you prayed that my mom would get to come home; He heard your prayer.”
“If you prayed that, in the midst of this stressful situation, I would still do well on my mid-term exam; He heard your prayer.”
“If you prayed for the opportunity for Spiritual conversations; He heard your prayer.”
“You became my voice when I could not find my own. Your prayers became my words when I could not articulate my own. Your prayers mattered this week, no matter how simple or eloquent; no matter if it was a single heart felt offering or many….our gracious LORD used every one, right to the point of my need! And so I thank you!”
“I feel that the LORD would have me encourage you to continue to pray as the Spirit leads and to give testimony to the love, to the mercy and to the grace of Jesus Christ. By giving testimony to the work and power of Jesus Christ in our lives we lift Him up so that HE can draw all people to Himself.”