So I sat in my chair in the sanctuary, with these others in theirs, one man in the small group with all welcome but obviously these are the regulars. Our eyes closed, traffic noises nearby, including a siren at one point and when I hear one I always pray for those hurt or potentially hurt, so in my head, I interrupted the praying going on for this emergency. We'd talked first, each one of us at a time, before the pastor started to lead the praying.
M and I, and I asked to include my father, for my church is his only connection to any, and I was asked about my mother and stepfather nicely, M and I were one of the few families scheduled to be prayed about specifically today. Every Wednesday at a set time, this pastor and the group form, and pray, rotating through the last names of those within the congregation. It used to be "all staff," but seems, apparently, it is not, as only one staff member was there this time. Betty had called me, possibly twice, but M and I were busy at the library and then her typing / composing her essay due today, and Monday night after getting in from dance, I figured I'd just call Betty back Tuesday. Until Tuesday flew by. But, in my mind, and in asking M her concerns and praises, I focused for a moment upon myself, and on M, and what ARE our concerns, struggles, praises, joys, going on right now, to share with God, and with these people.
My boss left early for his meeting, and I thought, oh heck, maybe I'll just go by the church instead of trying to call them in, trying to reach Betty now, last minute. Betty helps with the youth, and has since I, and her daughter and their neighbor boy, my high school boyfriend who was best friends at the time with C. Betty has known all of us, and is a wonderful woman, who shows her care and love of God and people. I'm driving up, counting down the minutes left until "prayer time." Normally people's requests are taken in advance, not show in person, but. I feel I could really use some prayers and uplifting right now, so I was trying to make this. I debated calling the youth pastor, who I have in my cell phone, to ask him what doors were open. LOL. I tried 'my" door, anyway, and it opened, so great:)
The pastor was praying, carefully, with thought and God's guidance, over everyone there, and others who she knew could use prayer, and those request which had come in. I'd add a few of my own, silently, when I knew the person, or I could relate to the situation. And I cried, I didn't mean to and sometimes I thought I wasn't, but gosh, it's been a horrible set of stuff lately in some regards for me, last Saturday oy, and etc., and it is a release, and such nice things said (even Betty piped in). And I had requested the thanks for a great new boss, whom I work well with. I remember the pastor giving thanks for the moments together, with the busy world around us in a busy week, for a little bit of Sabbath. And we talked of the great testiment to living of ones faith that the Amish are doing in the face of the horrible tragedy that befell many of their girls this past week. That hour together, it WAS a little bit of a Sabbath.
There was some socializing after, also, including sharing photos of one ones new granddaughter:) A woman I had not known before had taken my hand to let me know it was nice to meet me. I told her it'd been nice to meet her, too, and I thanked her for what she does. "Me? I don't do anything." "But, you do!, you pray every week." "Tsk, that's nothing," said with a defeating sort of shrug. She hadn't said a lot earlier, other than wishing to sell her home finally, and is hard of hearing, but that wasn't all of her reasons it seemed. I stayed holding her hand, and I looked right into her eyes.
"My late grandma was in her 90's, and she may have felt as if she had little control over helping the lives of those she loved, but she could pray. And she did pray, and it was important. It helps." I meant this, and said it all very seriously, reassuringly.
The woman almost looked as if she was going to cry. "Thank you."
"We can all only do what we can do." :)
I'd have likely worded it all a bit differently, but, my grandmother was not powerless, and she knew it. She had her chair and her Bibles and books by her chair, sure, but no matter where she was, she knew she had the power of God with her, and the power of prayer:) She had a real faith, and I know it made a difference in my life.
I'm walking towards the one set of doors, the others seemed surprised, "You parked over there?" "Sure, I've been coming here since the 70's, this was the only entrance, and, well, I still park there." "But, how did you get in?" We tested the doors. They WERE locked, lol, NOT a way to get in from the outside through those doors. We decided that God had unlocked one of them for me, so I could get in on time:) In our "busy lives that let us know we're alive" as the pastor also said.