We often hear that it all “rises and falls on leadership.” Though I believe that God leverages influence, position, authority, social intelligence, and vision to move and shape organizations and churches, I’m not all that convinced it all rises and falls there. In fact, I tend to believe that it all rises and falls on prayer.
I know, I know…this sounds like a preacher getting all churchy. Maybe that’s true. However, the longer I walk this journey, the more convinced I become that true transformation, the kind that God longs for through his redemptive vision of Jesus Christ is only possible as the people of God humble themselves, acknowledge they don’t within themselves have the influence, position, etc. to bring about change, and pray will God’s dream become a reality.
This morning a few pastors (Grace Methodist, Pekin Congregational Church, Salvation Army, and Bridgeway Community Church) from all over Pekin gathered in front of City Hall for prayer. Why? Because we are passionate for our city. We are passionate to see the kind of healing in our community that would bring about substantial change in the lives of the hurting, the broken, the weary, the addicted, the forgotten, and frustrated. We are passionate for Pekin to become the kind of community with a story that people love to tell…a story of hope, healing, and possibility. We know that doesn’t begin with city leadership, mayors, councils, or initiatives. It begins with prayer. God will use all those various entities in our community…but PRAYER first.
Through the passionate commitment of Pam Cochran, minister at Grace United Methodist in Pekin, the ministerial alliance has reconvened in this last year. Pam said, “When I arrived in town and found out that ministerial alliance had disbanded, I wept.” She believes it’s only through unity can this community become all that God has called and created it to be. A huge part of that commitment to solidarity and unity is prayer.
Each Tuesday Morning, we intend to gather throughout our city for a time of prayer. 8am each week, we will ask God to move in the city of Pekin and throughout the county of Tazewell in a powerful way. For the next several weeks, we will be standing just outside the steps of city hall. We would love to invite any pastor or parishioner that is passionate for their city, has the time available on Tuesday mornings, and would like to gather for a time of prayer to come and join us. There is no agenda and there is no “denominational” division. This is a time of prayer, solidarity, and unity for the sake of our community.
God is moving. This isn’t the only movement of solidarity happening throughout our community. Monthly the “War Room Men” meet at the building at Sabella Street for a unity breakfast led by Tim Sorrells. This last month nearly 200 men from over 30 churches gathered together to encourage and strengthen one another. This is another witness to the way in which God is at work, uniting Christians throughout the community for the sake of our community.
Let us lock arms, fall on our knees, and join our voices together, calling upon God to work out His will and His way in our community. May God mend the broken hearted, comfort the afflicted, release the bound up and addicted, grant wisdom to our leaders, and pour out the full force of his blessings and grace in the city of Pekin and the county of Tazewell.