9:30 am Summer Worship Service beginsSunday, May 26th

Vision 2024

Vision 2024 Prayer Letter - 09/24/22

September 24, 2022

Dear Brother or Sister in Christ,

Let’s continue praying for our shared future at E-Free Bemidji as we approach our 100-year anniversary in 2024.

Psalm 9 begins, “I will give thanks to you, LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds. I will be glad and rejoice in you.” So, let’s begin with some prayers of thankfulness. Praise God that giving to our General Ministry Fund has seen an uptick in recent weeks. Praise God that our fall ministries have gotten off to a good start with many volunteers showing up ready and eager to serve. Praise God for our monthly Senior Connection Potluck which continues to bless more and more people. Praise God for our new Wednesday Night Kids Ministry Director Amy Graf and our new Office Manager Jessica Westlund who are both energetically fulfilling their ministry roles at our church. Praise God for an incredible kick-off Sunday on September 11th including almost 400 people onsite, a fun morning of wearing our jerseys, a delicious lunch together, and multiple ministries, new and old, starting up for this fall. Praise God for a wonderful Bengali lunch fundraiser, as well as a fantastic golf event, both of which raised significant dollars toward our November short-term team. Praise God for our various boards and committees who are working hard together behind the scenes to lead our church in its future vision and direction.

Please pray that our various ministries will continue to have enough volunteers, and that those volunteers will be well-equipped for effective discipleship ministry. Pray also for more volunteers in key areas like technology, social media, and our welcome table. Pray that our leaders will know which ministries to prioritize and which ones to hold back on. Please pray for our Nominating Committee as they finalize their work in finding people to run for our various leadership positions. Pray that just the right people will be nominated and that those who are elected will be just the right fit for our ministry needs in the coming year. Pray also for our Trustees and Elders as they make various ministry decisions about our church’s current needs and future direction. May they have great wisdom and insight as they humbly seek God’s will in all things. Pray Matthew 6:33-34 for our entire church, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Let’s rejoice with the many couples who have recently gotten married. Praise God for how He brought them together. And pray that they will get off to a great start together, and then continue letting God mold and make them into the husband and wife that He wants them to be. Pray that all of the married couples in our church will be growing in personal faith as well as in their marital joy and maturity, whether they’ve been married a long time or short. Pray that many married couples will take advantage of the opportunity to attend our “Love and Respect” class on Sunday mornings. Pray also for those who are single. Pray that God will give them joy, contentment, and fulfillment. And pray for those who might like to find that special someone, pray that God will guide and direct them in His perfect timing.

Let’s remember to pray for those who’ve lost dear friends and loved ones. Pray that God’s supernatural peace will touch their hearts and soothe their hurts. Pray that we as a church family will know how to best love and serve one another as we go through various losses and struggles. Pray that E-Free will be a loving church family that is deeply devoted not only to Christ, but to one another as brothers and sisters in Christ. Whether it be through one-to-one relationships, Life Groups, a Bible study or Sunday School class, or some other small group or ministry team, may each and every one of us learn to love and be loved, putting 1 Peter 1:22 into practice, “love one another deeply, from the heart.” Pray for genuine warmth in our church family and a deepening Christian unity and oneness in Christ.

Pray for our various music ministries on Sunday mornings, Wednesday nights, and beyond. May our worship leaders be truly that, not just leading a song, but leading us into God’s presence and reverencing Him above all things. Pray that we will be mindful of Who we are worshipping. May John’s vision in Revelation 4-5 of the throne in heaven inform our understanding of worship. Pray for our various singers and instrumentalists. May they continue to practice and hone their skills for God’s glory. Pray that our teams will have unity as they rehearse and practice. And pray that they will have fun together as they serve the Lord and glorify Him together.

Pray for those who serve behind the scenes in places like our kitchens, our nursery, and so on. May God be honored as each one of us uses our particular gift to build up the body. As Pastor Eric preached back on September 11, may we be “The Body Together.” Pray that we will all practice a faith that rightly understands that “I need the body of Christ, and the body needs me.” May God be glorified as we pull together for the cause of the gospel. Pray that no one sits on the sideline, but that all of us embrace the calling of Ephesians 2:10, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

Please continue to pray for the sermons, week in and week out. Pray also for the various teaching and discussion that will be happening this fall in our Sunday School classes, adult Bible studies, Life Groups, kids ministry, youth ministry, young adult ministry, and so on. May God be pleased with us as we are careful to teach His truth, and His truth alone. Pray also for our upcoming Second Sunday Prayer Service on October 9 at 6:00 p.m. Pray for Karl Salscheider and those who are helping with this service. May we be a church that loves to pray and that realizes our utter dependence on God.

Pray for our many first-time and returning visitors. Pray that we’ll be a friendly, welcoming church. Pray that people new to our church, as well as long-time attenders, will discover the best ways to get involved and feel included in what God is doing here. Pray that our Newcomers Lunch on October 2 will be an effective “onramp” for people who are considering their next step toward involvement and commitment at E-Free. Pray that we’ll be a place where everyone has ample opportunity to grow in their faith and make progress in our journey of becoming fully devoted followers of Jesus together. Pray also that more people will come to salvation through the ministry of our church and that our baptismal tank will be more and more busy.

Pray that we will take to heart Jesus’ letters to the 7 churches in Revelation 2-3. May we be inspired by their strengths and perseverance, and rebuked by their weaknesses and warnings. In all this, pray that E-Free Bemidji will continuing becoming more and more the church that God would have us be!

Brothers and Sisters in Christ, thanks for praying!

Together for Christ,

Pastor Jerry

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