This year’s Mount Airy Ministerial Association National Day of Prayer was a declaration of dependency on God as well as a call to believe in the magnified power of Christians united in prayer for the nation.
The event was attended by more than 80 participants gathered on the front lawn of the Mount Airy Municipal Building.
Ministerial Association President Rev. Bob Josey told the group the ceremony was one of 40,000 similar ones across the nation “not ashamed to tell the world” about their belief in God and the power of prayer. He quoted from the Book of Romans, 15:6 “that ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God.”
Mayor Deborah Cochran’s proclamation noted the Continental Congress’s call for prayer in 1775 as proof since the nation’s inception there had been a call for the discernment of God in government actions. She asked for participants and leaders to place “faith in the unfailing character of their creator.” She encouraged those present to believe in prayer and reminded them faith “allows us to look forward with blessed hope.”
Dignitaries recognized included State Rep. Sarah Stevens, Town Manager Barbara Jones and City Clerk Niki Brame, Fire Chief Zane Poindexter and Assistant Chief Chris Fallaw, Mount Airy Police Chief Dale Watson and Captain Alan Freeman, City Commissioners Shirley Brinkley, Dean Brown, Jim Armbrister, and Mayor Pro Tem Steve Yokeley and as well as Cochran.
“Rejoice in the day the Lord has made,” said Dr. Darrell Tate in the “Prayer for America’s Hope” portion of the ceremony. “We serve an awesome God who loves us. Scripture says we have not because we ask not.” He said they should pray every day for America and looked to the country being a “missionary force” in a time when laws have been enacted contrary to marriage and the rights of the unborn. He prayed for America to “turn from its wicked ways” and asked prayers for families and said Christians should be as concerned about what goes on in their own house as well as the White House.
Dr. David Sparks’ sermon opened with President Abraham Lincoln’s establishing the day of prayer in 1863 and stressed that the power of prayer is increased “tenfold” when Christians weld the power of agreement.
“In unity there is strength. In the spiritual world this is compounded,” said Sparks. “We must pull together. We must work together. Our nation needs a great move of God across this countryside.” He cited Jesus’ words of how Christians would be known by the love they show “one for another.”
Sparks then told the group about how British forces in World War II had been circled by the German army at Dunkirk, as it seemed a devastating defeat for the allied forces was at hand there. He said England King George VI had called for a day of prayer for the trapped soldiers.
He explained the “miracle” of Dunkirk where the trapped forces were successfully evacuated by a huge force of volunteer boats and ships was set in motion by “praying Christians and a king who believed in prayer. God answered and the nation was saved. There was a great storm (which grounded the German air force) followed by a calm which allowed the rich boys with their yachts to help evacuate the soldiers. We need that type of united prayer our theme calls for.”
Sparks told the crowd “God is more willing to give to us than we are apparently ready to ask for.” He said America needs an “old time, Holy Ghost, Heaven sent revival.”
The presentation of the colors and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by members of the East Surry U.S. Army Junior Officers Reserve Training Corps. The benediction was given by Police Chaplan Gray Shelton. Patriotic music was provided by Ron Radatz, Don Warren, Norma Hunter, Mildred Gillespie and Hubert “Herb” McMillian. Members of White Plains Christian School Girl Scout Troop 02601 Alyssa Flynn, Kaitlyn Cook, Sydney Hall and Kimberlee also participated as part of their “Inside Government” merit badge.
David Broyles may be reached at 336-719-1952 or on twitter@MtAiryNewsDave.