Schenectady City Mission Prayer Table Report

March 22, 2012

Schenectady City Mission Prayer Table Report, Thursday, March 22, 2012, 5:30 – 6:15 p.m.. Torre and Jean Bissell, Richard Barratiere and Chuck Rinaldo from Christ Church Schenectady. This took place during the evening meal at the City Mission.

+–indicates received a wooden cross made by Dennis Adams of North Carolina

Rich — We prayed for a safe journey for Sophia (Rich’s wife)when she travels to visit her native Kenya. We also prayed for her sister Debbie who lives with Rich and Sophia.

Dan — He had two prayer requests: 1) For Tamara who is giving her witness at Victory Church in Albany about being set free from smoking; and 2) for a man who is in rehab — that he will make genuine progress from his addiction.

+++++++Janice — got 7 crosses to hand out to others. She joined us in praying for Dan’s prayer requests.

+Nathan (young man) — We prayed that he would be filled with and guided by the Holy Spirit. He also asked prayer for a man who was recently shot nearby in Schenectady.

Chuck — He gave a Praise the Lord! For a phone call from his brother Robert on Chuck’s 71 birthday this past week. Robert is experiencing real physical healing of a massive diabetes related infection in his upper arm. What excited Chuck was that Robert asked for prayer.

Torre — He asked prayer for more and better sleep.

+++Gary — He asked continued prayer that he would not be slammed around by circumstances. He got 3 crosses to hand out to others.

June — She reported that her elbow is better. We continued to pray for help for her when it comes time to move.

+Chuck — He asked prayer for work.
+Sabrida (Chuck’s girl friend) — She asked prayer for a new life.

Evelyn — Continued prayer for more organization in her life.

A Practical Guide for Lenten Self-Examination

March 22, 2012

A great resource from the collection of articles in the Lenten Guide published by  St. Paul’s Anglican Baton Rouge.  The following article is by the Rev. Dr. S. Randall Toms, St. Paul’s rector.

Here’s an excerpt which addresses the purpose of self-examination and a few crucial hints for how to keep self-examination from becoming self-condemnation:

The purpose of this self-examination is not that we might merely feel guilty about our sins.  Rather, the purpose of this self-examination is to break our hearts and humble us so that we might seek forgiveness from our Savior, Jesus Christ.  Also, this self-examination will help to convince us of our need for the power of the Holy Spirit to enable us wrestle, fight, overcome, and forsake these sins. After examining yourself, do not allow the knowledge of your sinfulness to cause you to despair. Rather, use this knowledge to drive you to Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.  After you have thoroughly examined yourself, ask God to work in your heart, by the power of the Holy Spirit, a true sorrow and hatred for all your sins so that you might forsake them and strive against them all your life.  Realize that if you truly repent and turn to Christ, he will forgive you all your trespasses.  After examining yourself, it would be a good idea to pray the General Confession:

ALMIGHTY and most merciful Father; We have erred, and strayed from thy ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; And there is no health in us. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare thou those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore thou those who are penitent; According to thy promises declared unto mankind in Christ Jesus our Lord. And grant, O most merciful Father, for his sake; That we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life, To the glory of thy holy Name. Amen.

I HIGHLY recommend reading the full article here.

Lent reflections: “Formed by Small Things”

March 22, 2012

Several authors writing for Intervarsity Press have been publishing Lenten Devotionals.  I’ve skimmed a few of the entries, but my favorite so far was an entry very early in the series by an author named Margot Starbuck, about being “formed” by the small choices we make – like how we treat others in a supermarket checkout line.  It brings Lenten disciplines and resolutions down to the really practical matter of our daily words and actions.

Here’s an excerpt:

In the life of Christian discipleship, we are formed less by grand spiritual gestures—such as the occasional three-week silent starvation-fast retreat—and more by the small choices we make daily to embrace the contours of the Jesus-patterned life.
So maybe forsaking chocolate for forty days won’t change the world.  It can, though, change me.  It can change you.  Each time we sacrifice in order to identify with Christ, or move in synch with Jesus into the world even though we feel entirely incompetent doing it, or when we embrace a holy practice for the sake of the kingdom, we are transformed a teeny bit more into his likeness.We’re formedby the nasty habits we decide to forsake.We’re shaped by the teeny weeny sacrifices we make.

We’re sculpted by the awkward uncomfortable discipleship opps to which we say “yes.”

Ultimately, learning the name of a cashier is a very small thing.  And yet small things are exactly what form us into the likeness of Jesus.

The full blog post by Margot Starbuck is here.

Here’s more info about the IVP authors Lent series

February 20th: Rachel Stone, forthcoming author
February 27th: Margot Starbuck, author of Girl in the Orange Dress, Unsqueezed and Small Things with Great Love
March 5th: J. Brent Bill, co-author of Awaken Your Senses
March 12th: Logan Mehl-Laituri, forthcoming author of Reborn on the 4th of July
March 19th: Andrew Byers, author of Faith Without Illusions
March 26th: Valerie Hess, author of Spiritual Disciplines Devotional
April 2nd: Beth Booram, co-author of Awaken Your Senses
Good Friday, April 6th: Chad Young, author of Authenticity

Mark 8:31-9:1

March 22, 2012

And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. (Mark 8:31)
      Jesus, you are “a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.” You were despised and rejected. Even today many of the chief priests and elders of the Episcopal Church reject you and your words and deeds.

He spoke this word openly. Then Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. (Mark 8:32)
      Holy Spirit, none of us like to confront the hard sayings of Jesus. He makes us uncomfortable as we look at the depths of sin in our hearts.

But when he had turned around and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter, saying, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.” (Mark 8:33)
      Father, please show us how to be good leaders and examples to others. Jesus saw that Peter was a bad example for the other disciples. Correct us and help us recognize it whenever we would lead the other disciples astray. Help us daily be mindful of what you care about rather than what the world cares about. Thank you.

When he had called the people to himself, with his disciples also, he said to them, “Whoever desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” (Mark 8:34-38 )
      Jesus, please help us embrace the cost of discipleship daily. Thank you.

And he said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of God present with power.” (Mark 9:1)
      Father, we long to see your kingdom come and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

      Jesus, come and rule and reign in our hearts day by day. Thank you.

A word received: I AM your strength — keep turning to me.

Thursday: 69:1-23(24-30)31-38 * 73; Exod. 1:6-22: 1 Cor. 12:12-26: Mark 8:27-9:1
Friday: 95* & 102 * 107:1-32; Exod. 2:1-22: 1 Cor. 12:27-13:3: Mark 9:2-13

      Notes from the Front Line

***** Start now reading and reflecting on the lessons for Sunday so that you can receive all that God has for you (John 12:20-33; Hebrews 5:(1-4)5-10; Jeremiah 31:31-34; Psalm 51 or 51:11-16).

***** Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2012
From: Nigel Mumford
Subject: Daily Quote…
      Sometimes my mind races with thoughts so often scattered.
      There is no apparent theme. Then, in, through, and with prayer there is focus. Perhaps it is like an automatic aperture on a camera, only the automatic bit is manual! Then, like a worked lump of clay, suddenly there is shape. Thank you God, now I see it, now I recognize it. Now I know… The catalyst is prayer, the answer is You Lord. I did not even realize there was a question, but now I know the answer.

***** Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2012
From: Welcome Home Initiative Dayton Prayer
Subject: WHI Dayton Prayer Request and Praise Report 2012 03 21
      [You can find more information on the Welcome Home Initiative by clicking on]
      Jesus said, … Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? (Matthew 9:4-5 NIV)
      Lord Jesus, you said and did both with ease. Lord Jesus, forgive our sins and heal us. We believe.
      1. Fr. Nigel presented WHI to USMC at Parris Island. Chaplains and resilience caregivers at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling MD, Joint Base Andrews MD, WPAFB OH, Walter Reed Hospital, US Military Academy at WP, and many Christian communities in DC/VA and OH areas are getting to know WHI.
      2. Pray that service academy cadets and midshipmen can attend events like WHI; spiritual basic training for tomorrow’s servant leaders.
      3. Pray that WHI be hosted at R&R locations. Service members are given several days of R&R during their deployment and are allowed to consume three alcoholic beverages per day. Won’t it be great for their R&R be extended for one or two more days, alcohol free, if they volunteer to take part in WHI before their return to combat duties?
      4. Cadet Clyde – improve the quality of his relationship with his dad. Instructor John, a combat vet, and his dad Jim, a Vietnam vet. Jim, now a Christian, is serving 10-year prison sentence and trying to restore broken relationships with ex-wife, children, relatives, and friends.
      5. US government civilian employees serving in crime-ridden and war-torn areas. Traumatized, they got sent home, found unfit for service, many got laid off. Caring human resources colleagues cannot reverse many of these terminations and get them the help they need to return to duty.
      6. After wounded warriors are discharged from the military, it may take 1 to 2 years in processing paperwork before VA benefits and care are available to them..
      7. Many military spouses have lost their jobs / income. With military downsizing, many service members are afraid to seek help fearing they may be discharged.
      8. Ch. Scott needs second surgery. Fr. M’s mom passed away. Fr. Mike works long hours caring for silent professionals. Ch. Jack to deploy in May.
      9. WHI Washington DC 10-12 Apr is now open to all hands, all ranks.
      10. WHI Dayton 17-19 Apr is reaching 40 attendees (30 vets, 10 spouses) and 20+ facilitators; doubling the size of the Aug 2011 retreat. Awareness and fundraising event on 29 March evening. Lots of planning, coordination, and actions.

Albany Intercessor

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