Fence Post of Faith—May 2009

I want start off this month with a scripture from Philippians 4:6  “ Be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.”

If you didn’t know May 7 is national day of prayer, many times I have talked about the importance of pray in my Cowboy sermons and in Fence Post of Faith.  But to be honest, many of us only pray with passion when faced with a crisis—right before a big barrel race, in times of a career decision, suffering or tragedy. In such times of prayer we may discover God in a new way and find almost tangible comfort. But sometimes God may seem silent—perhaps distressingly so. Sometimes we may wonder if prayer changes anything. We may ask, “If God has his plans and will work his purposes, do we really need to pray? Even at some point in their lives many Christians are tempted to ask God “Why aren’t my prayers answered?” though when we do so we may actually mean “Why aren’t they answered in the way that I want?” However he answers, he always answers in accordance with his will. Sometimes God answers “no,” and the Bible gives some reasons why. Frequently he answers “Yes,” but not instantly.  At other times God may first need us to be prepared to be part of the answer before he will respond to our prayers.

Here last month my home town church after a Maundy Thursday service, started a 16hour prayer Vigil, it was done in 30minute prayer sessions, we have a small chapel on the side of our church, the room was full of flowers, no music, the only sound you could here was the Constance pouring of water into a pitcher, I came in at 3:00 am. You would knock on the door at the start of your time and when the person in the chapel came out, the only thing you would say is “Peace Be with you”. It was for me one of the most spiritual prayer session, I have ever participated in. If you ever get a chance to participate in one please do. I prayed for a lot of things, for all the people that have touched my life in one way or another. I prayed for our country, and for our leaders. When you really get to thinking about it, there is a lot of things we can pray for,  and to be honest I found prayer hard,  I learned that I could pray more, or more sincerely, or less selfishly, than I do now. I believe that one of the most important things we can learn from prayer in the Bible is why we pray. If we understood a little more of the importance of prayer in the outworking of God’s plans and in the way it can change us, maybe we would pray differently.

Did you know that Rodeo is one of the last sports that start off with a prayer! I recently attended the high school rodeo held in Waterloo Iowa, they ask me if I would do the prayer for the two performances on Saturday,  I said yes and then the thought process kicked in, what was I going to say, would it sound right, then I remembered what my pastor  always says, as long as it comes from the heart, that’s all that matters… prayer has its heart two-way communication with God, prayer is where we talk to God and listen to him, discovering his purposes for the world and those around us.

I hope to be at Waterloo Barrel Bash to do Cowboy church services in May, it looks like they had another successful BBR.  Let’s keep Renea and the Barrel bash’s in our prayers she has done a lot to promote great barrel racing in the Midwest.  In closing here is a prayer: May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind be always at your back.  May the sun shine warm upon your face; and the rain fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand. Adios Jeff