Prayer & Fasting Day, Autumn 2013
"Declare a holy fast....and cry out to the Lord" - Joel 1 v 14
What a blessed day we shared when the YBA churches took time out for prayer and fasting, writes Joolz Walker
Here at the YBA office, Debbie, Ken and Joolz were joined by Norma Hobbs and we prayed for the churches throughout Yorkshire, their situations, their communities, their needs and for the Association as a whole. We prayed for the young people and the new expressions of Church that we are seeing - and we prayed for the older people and the retired ministers and pastors who have served so faithfully, that they would continue to see fruit.
We prayed through a song - Let Your Glory Fall (Father of Creation) by David Ruis, which we believe was given to us and we had a picture of a long chain with God as the clasp and all along it were decorations and smaller chain bracelets all linked together. The decorations represented people's gifts/talents/roles - and as they laid down those roles they didn't simply drop off, they moved along the chain, which God was holding together and working on, strengthening the weak links and polishing the decorations.
The early morning prayer group at Harehills Lane Baptist Church, Leeds, reported that the emerging theme was connecting cross-generationally.
Sharon Prior at Beauchief Baptist Church said the prayer sessions there had all gone well. 'I can't wait to see what God is going to do,' she said.
The Revd Brian Goodall, minister at Dewsbury Baptist Church, kept us posted on facebook about his fasting - what an inspirational man. The Revd Keith Jones posted that Shipley Baptist Church hosted two hours of prayer - in the afternoon and evening. YBA churches represented at the two events were Shipley, Guiseley, West Lane Haworth, Westgate, Sandy Lane.
The Revd Sally Nelson, of Wetherby Baptist Church, said, 'We had lots of people away - about half the congregation - so our main prayer time was held on Sunday, after our service with a second one on Tuesday. We prayed for many of the submitted requests from fellow churches in the YBA and for all the team. We felt encouraged by doing it and we trust God for all he will bring about in our life together.'
And on Twitter, friends at New North Road Baptist Church in Huddersfield, tweeted about their prayer time and we received encouragement from Fresh Streams saying, 'Great to see you are taking a day to pray and fast. Praying for you as an association that God will speak in your day.' The YBA tweeted to Hope 2014 that we had been praying the mission would bear fruit and they replied: 'Thanks. Keep us posted on mission plans in your area.'
Regional Minister for Ministry the Revd Graham Ensor said the day had been called
as a simple way to corporately express our dependence upon God and pray for the life, health and growth of our churches in the Association.