What’s your favorite place to pray? UMC.org, A United Methodist website, asked their readers where their favorite places were to pray. Some loved to pray while out in nature, being in and surrounded by God’s creation. Others mentioned that their places of prayer were wherever they could be active; from walks or runs in their neighborhoods to mowing their grass. The one favorite that caught my attention was that people like to pray while they drive back and forth to work. I have trouble enough paying attention to how I (and others) are driving, let alone adding one more thing for me to do with all of the craziness taking place in and around me.
At my previous appointment, my favorite place to pray was walking the halls of the church and praying for those people and those things that weighed upon my heart. I primarily did this first thing in the morning before the busyness of the day and the business of the church started. Depending on my day and/or any distractions that might come along, the overall time I spent in prayer varied from day to day. Since coming to Salem, I have tried to develop the same rhythm here but have had very little success. This makes me wonder if God is calling me to new ways to pray and/or new places to pray.
During our staff meeting this week, Pastor Carol asked me if I would be available to go with her that evening to West Newton Elementary School to pray for the school. Knowing that my evening was free, I told Carol I would be glad to meet her there. When we arrived, we were greeted by one of our church members and by the principal.
The principal asked how we would like to pray for the school, and Carol mentioned that she would like to go into each of the classrooms and pray for both the teachers and the students. I loved her idea and agreed that would be something I would like to do, too. The principal approved of Carol’s plan, and after praying for him for the upcoming year, Carol and I went on our way. We divided up the classrooms and began our prayer quest.
To say I was blessed by this opportunity to pray would be a vast understatement. Almost all of my classrooms were unlocked and I was able to stand among the desks and pray for the teachers and students. What a joy and honor it was for me to offer prayers for the teachers and students of our community. And I may have found a new place to pray. Who knows? It just might become one of my new favorite places to pray.
In Christ’s Love and Service, Dan