Almost every Sunday when I walk through the front door of our church there is Ross with a big smile, a handshake and a genuine word of welcome. This last Sunday our pastor asked Ross to give a testimony and it was quite fascinating. For the last 30 years he and a friend have been welcoming new residents to Hahndorf and inviting them to church. He said that whenever they see a ‘For Sale’ sign go up they make a mental note. They wait for the ‘SOLD’ sticker and finally for the sign to come down. Then on Saturday morning, two weeks after the sign has been taken down, they individually go and visit the new residents. Not just once, but three or four times.
Ross is a fairly simple man. He isn’t anyone special to look at. He has been retired for quite some time and has a stutter. So he said the first thing he does when he gets into his car on Saturday morning to go visiting is that he turns off the radio and he prays. Ross knows he doesn’t have all the answers, so he prays that God would give him the words. And as a result, he had some great testimonies to tell, including a lady who was never allowed to learn about religion as a young girl but now, because of Ross’s visit and the words God gave him, is a pastor in the Uniting church.
Reflecting on the book of 1 Timothy, this was the main point of the message that day. When Paul sent young Timothy to a church that was experiencing all kinds of difficulties he wrote:
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 1 Timothy 2:1-2
The first thing Paul instructs Timothy to do to fix the problem is to pray. Why? Because like Ross, we don’t have all the answers to every situation. Praying reminds us that God is Lord of everyone and everything. And it is as we pray that God is able to shape our hearts and minds to be more like his, so that his peace can prevail.
Got some really important things to do? Remember, first things first: pray. As Martin Luther is often quoted as saying, “I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.”
Spiritual & Cultural Leader