If you haven’t heard, Pastor Jennifer had her baby! We continue to congratulate her and the family on this joyful addition to their family. Pastor Jennifer will be on maternity leave until mid-June to give that time to bond, adjust, and begin the Pampering process again which surely she Luvs to do.
McKenna Marie Burns was born at 8:35 a.m. on April 14. She weighs 8 lbs 1.3 Ounces, and is 19 inches exactly. Pastor Jennifer shared ” It was a smooth, natural delivery and we are both doing great. Thank you all so very very much for your prayers and support! Our prayers were certainly answered.”
Please join me in prayer:
God of creation, we offer you grateful praise for the gift of this precious child. We give you thanks for a healthy delivery. Bless the Burns Family with your presence and surround them with your love. We ask this through Christ our Savior. Amen.
Once again, the cold and snow of winter gives way to new life. I am loving seeing the flowers bloom, the birds singing in the spring, and the animals returning to graze. After 9 months gestation, I also can’t wait to meet my family’s new little one.
Sometimes waiting is the hardest part. Winter is long, pregnancy is painful (at least for me), Holy Week was awful for Jesus and the Disciples, Mission and ministry is often slow hard work. We long to see new life right away. It’s harder to wait actively and patiently.
One of the ways that Joyful Neighbors has been actively and patiently waiting, is through prayer walking. In Feb. we actively prayed over every home in the Timber Creek community. We plan to do this again this spring, again in the summer, again in the fall. Why? Because it matters to be immersed in prayer.
I personally know the power of active prayer. I’ve been immersed in your prayers for the last 9 months. There were nights of pain and anguish when I didn’t know if I would be able to rise again the next day and keep going. But time and time again, the active prayers of my church family, along with the actions, words, and attitudes of prayer have lifted me up, giving me strength, joy, and courage from beyond myself.
As I step back from active ministry from approximately April 10-June 5, I pray that you will “not get tired of doing good, because in time we’ll have a harvest if we don’t give up.” (Galatians 6:9). So, I encourage you to pray actively by doing prayer walks. Consider leaving a note of encouragement as well. Here’s the prayers I wrote for our Joyful Neighbors group to use as we prayed over each home. Adapt it, use it, and be blessed to be a blessing.
As you begin, consider praying the following centering prayer or one similar:
Holy Spirit of God,
Guide us in this time of prayer walking, that we may see with your eyes, love with your heart, and follow wisely your presence that goes before us. Keep us open, humble, safe, and attentive that we might serve you faithfully as joyful neighbors. ~ Amen
At each home, please pause, pray, and hang a door hanger on the door. This is a suggested starting place for your prayers:
We give thanks for those who live in this home and ask your protection to surround it. May it be a place of hope, joy, and love where your presence may be known. Guide us in relationship with one another, that together we may draw closer to you and your kingdom. In name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, ~ Amen