People nowadays often fill their schedules so they don't have a minute to spare. But what if your pastor asked you for five minutes -- five minutes a day for 10 days to pray for the church?
Pastor Paul Larsen did just that, asking members of Christ the King Lutheran Church of New Brighton, Minn., to join the "5-10 Club." Club members agreed to spend five minutes a day for 10 days praying that the congregation would move closer to the accomplishment of its mission.
Following is the invitation he sent, which included prayer starters, Bible passages and a heart sticker to place somewhere it will remind them to pray.
The 5-10 Club
Thank you for your generous support of the ministries of Christ the King. I am inviting you to join me in "The 5-10 Club". Club members are asked to engage in 5 minutes of prayer for 10 days. Please pray that CtK will continue to move closer to the accomplishment of her mission. I have enclosed a list of 10 Bible passages and some prayer starters to help you focus your prayer time.
If each member of Christ the King would commit themselves to weekly worship, daily prayer, regular Bible reading, faithful service and generous giving, then lives will be changed! Please join me in prayer over the next 10 days in the hope and confidence that we might pray this into being.
Please place the enclosed heart sticker on the face of your watch or on your bathroom mirror or on the rearview mirror in your car as a prayer reminder. The next time you see me in church let me know you have joined the 5-10 Club.
Yours in Christ,
5-10 Club Prayer Guide
Guided by the Gospel, it is the mission of Christ the King Lutheran Church to make disciples for Jesus Christ by inviting and welcoming all to serve God and God's people by joining in:
- GATHERING for worship and fellowship.
- GROWING in faith and understanding.
- GIVING of ourselves and our resources.
DAY ONE - Guided by the Gospel
For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. (John 3:16)
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God. (Ephesians 2:8)
Offer a prayer of thanks that God loves us, forgives us and redeems us as a pure gift. Pray that this wonderful Gospel message will guide all that we do as a congregation and as individuals. Ask God to guide you so that the decisions you make, the way you relate to other people, and the actions you take might reflect the good and gracious news of God's love.
DAY TWO - Make disciples
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. (Matthew 28:19)
Ask God to continually remind us that we are sent out to make disciples of all nations. Pray that God would help us to make disciples of the people we encounter at work, school and the rest of our everyday lives. Invite God to provide you with opportunities to talk about your faith and live out your faith so that others might encounter Christ as they encounter you.
DAY THREE - Inviting
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. (Acts 2:8)
Pray that Christ the King might be an inviting congregation. Ask that we each might be reminded that it is our privilege and responsibility to share the good news with others. Ask God to guide you to someone you might invite to worship.
DAY FOUR - Welcoming
Welcome one another, therefore, just as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God. (Romans 15:7)
Ask God to inspire us to be a congregation that welcomes visitors and makes all who attend here feel wanted and appreciated. Pray for the strength and courage to offer a welcome to one or two people you don't know each Sunday.
DAY FIVE - Gathering for worship
Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy. (Exodus 20:8)
Worship the Lord and serve him only. (Matthew 4:10)
Draw near to God and he will draw near to you. (James 4:8a)
Give thanks for the privilege and opportunity to be a part of a worshiping community. Pray that all might desire to gather for worship to offer God our thanks and praise. Ask God to help us understand that worship is primarily for God's benefit, not our own, so that our motive in worship is to bring glory and honor to our Creator.
DAY SIX - Gathering for fellowship
Wherever two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them."
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." (John 13:35)
Rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep." (Romans 12:15)
Give thanks for the opportunity to gather for fellowship with other believers. Pray that all in our congregation will develop mutually supportive relationships that lead to spiritual growth. Ask God to open you to see people whom you can rejoice and also those whom you might console in a time of sorrow.
DAY SEVEN - Growing in faith
Blessed are those who trust in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord.
These gifts were given ... to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ until all of us come to the unity of faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to maturity, to the measure of the full stature of Christ." (Ephesians 4:11-13)
Ask God to help our congregation to grow in faith and that we might demonstrate that faith in our actions. Pray that our members will continue to mature spiritually so that we each become more Christ-like. Ask God to renew and increase in you the gift of faith that you might trust in God even as Jesus did.
DAY EIGHT - Growing in understanding
My child, if you accept my words and treasure up my commandments within you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; if you indeed cry out for insight, and raise your voice for understanding; if you seek it like silver, and search for it as for hidden treasures - then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. (Proverbs 2: 1-6)
Pray that our congregation will grow in understanding - that we will search for it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures. Ask God to grant us understanding of his will for our lives and how we can be a part of God's ministry in the world. Ask that God might guide us as individuals that we might grow in our desire to learn from the scriptures and that our learning might lead to greater spiritual maturity that shows itself in a Christ-like life.
DAY NINE - Giving of ourselves
Then Jesus told his disciples, "If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me." (Matthew 16:24)
Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received. (1 Peter 4:10)
Pray that God will rise up an abundance of faithful servants in our congregation that all may use their gifts to further God's kingdom. Ask that each member would find a place to be involved in the life of the church beyond worship. Spend time listening to how God might be calling you to use your gifts.
DAY TEN - Giving of Our Resources
Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in my house, and thus put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts; see if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you an overflowing blessing. (Malachi 3:10)
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. (Matthew 6:21)
Give thanks for the abundant blessings we have received from God and ask God to grant our congregation the courage to reach out to those in need and give of our resources. Pray that God will inspire each member to grow in their giving that they might also grow in their faith. Ask that each member would discover the joy of giving.
Paul Larsen serves as pastor of Christ Lutheran Church in New Brighton, MN.