Prayer has taken on a life of its own here at Faith4life – Mississippi. After occupying the position of Senior Pastor, I quickly realized this assignment was “Bigger than Me.” To be honest, I struggled with being the first Woman Senior Pastor. I did not believe I had a tool belt or Anointing to Pastor.  I had been given a direct order to take this mountain by order of the Holy Ghost through my spiritual father “The Bishop.” Was it easy? “NO!”  I had to take one step at a time and put all of my trust in God.

I cried out to God in prayer. It was in these intense times of communion with Him that I came to understand that He would never entrust hundreds of lives into my care, if HE was not going to do it through me. I was not alone. The Holy Spirit literally became my teacher, my guide, my counselor and my strength. From the very beginning prayer became my focus for the church. He told me to teach them to pray and you pray with them, not just for them.

We Lead; They Follow

If the congregation never sees you pray with them, you will never have a successful prayer team.

We encourage our men to bring their families to prayer. At first, we set a goal of 50 consistent people at Saturday morning Intercessory Prayer. Every Sunday, we would inform the church that prayers are being answered at Intercessory Prayer. The testimonies are awesome. People are thanking God for their houses paid off, massive debt cancellations, cancer being healed, growths dissolving, etc. Reading testimonies on Sunday gives the church hope. Our God is not a respecter of persons; He is a respecter of faith!

“ Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. ” Hebrew 11:1

The Goal of 50 people was exceeded. Last Saturday, we had 184 people in attendance. The momentum is building. We are praying for the nations, the church (universal), that God would have mercy on us for not allowing our light to shine, for our apathy, our sins of idol worship, the killing of unborn babies, us allowing homosexuality to run wild in the church and the nation, and for our secret sins of commission and omission. We are praying for the sleeping giant to awake and that revival would break out in the churches! We have a right to cry out to God.

“ If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. ” 2 Chronicles 7:14

God is Faithful

Are we faithful to God, to the degree that He is faithful to us?

We pray, then pray and pray some more. We have All Night Prayer, every 3 months. 408 people came out to our most recent one, Glory to God! You can look for anything to happen at All Night Prayer. The people are excited, God is exalted and Jesus is Lord.

One Wednesday night, the whole church left the sanctuary and concluded service in the parking lot. We held hands praying, drawing a blood line around our property. We spoke the blessing over it. Now, every quarter we have Church Clean Up Day, where 125 people came out to serve. Lunch was donated by one of the saints! I am telling you that if you will pray and get your pride out of the way, God will answer!

An Outreach Project

Our prayer team prays over special projects.

In March of 2014, Faith4Life Church hosted our first Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. We carried letters of invitation to the Chiefs and Commanders of the law enforcement agencies within our metropolitan area. Hinds County Sheriff’s Department, the Jackson Police Department (5 precincts) and the Clinton Police Department were all represented. Our prayers were answered! The total attendance was 880. 79 were police officers, and 29 answered the altar call. The Captains told me at the reception that they were “overwhelmed” with the LOVE from the congregation. God gave me a word for them. I ministered on their “Spiritual Armor and Weapons of Mass Destruction.” –The Blood, The Word, The Holy Spirit. We are still getting thank you emails from this event. Praise God!

“ (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds) ” 2 Corinthians 10:4

Family Blessing

Bonding with the people.

One day, I was walking and praying asking God how he wanted me to “bond” with the people. He told me to pray for families. This is how “The Family Blessing” was birthed. The Congregation is asked to call and scheduled a Family Blessing on a Sunday. On this day, they bring their whole family to church. The family has reserved seating and I welcome the family during service. After service, I pray for every member of the family according to their own special request. After every person’s needs are met, I pronounce the Blessing over the family. Then I pronounce the Family Blessing over the entire family.

The Family Blessing opens the door for parishioners to invite family members that would otherwise not come to church. This is an outreach tool.

We also have Home Visitation by one of our staff ministers. However, it would shock you to learn how many of the members are ashamed of where they live. So instead of us coming to their homes, they bring their extended families to the church. This does not replace Home Visitation. Rather, it adds to the services we provide for our members and their families. Especially those family members that do not know Christ.

It’s A Tremendous Blessing

We have had several families join the church, just because we took time to pray for and with them.

Prayer is the key to unlock the Blessing of God on your life, your family and your ministry. So, be encouraged and take the time to pray than pray and pray some more!

This article is written by Pastor Kathryn Stramler