“But Hannah replied, “No, my lord, I am a woman oppressed in spirit; I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have poured out my soul before the LORD.” (1 Samuel 1:15)
This picture of Hannah pouring her heart out before the LORD is one of my favorite images of prayer in the Scripture. We see within it a woman earnestly pleading with the LORD and seeking His gracious favor, specifically in the manner of removing the barrenness of her womb. This was not a loud, public prayer, but a silent, hidden prayer whose intensity was depicted only by the slight movement of Hannah’s lips. And yet, it is a prayer heard by our God, and one that finds fulfillment in the birth of the great prophet Samuel.
In the quiet recesses of your prayer time in these next weeks, may these petitions be lifted to our Lord as we seek His favor and mercy within our AFLC and our Schools.
- Pray on behalf of all of our students and teachers enjoying Spring break, March 24-April 8. We remember especially our Missions and Ministry class currently serving in Ecuador and our Concert Choir as they tour Eastern Europe. There exists in these endeavors wonderful opportunity for proclaiming the truth of God’s word, for witnessing to the power of the Gospel, and for celebrating and praising the greatness of our LORD.
- Pray for the many folks planning for our 56th Annual Conference to be held in Dickinson, ND, June 12-15 under the theme “That You May Know” (1 John 5:13). We look forward to this opportunity to come together as a community of faith, seeking God’s will and leading, giving thanks for His gracious and sustaining provision, and acknowledging His powerful work within our AFLC and its congregations.
- Praise for the 40+ students already accepted to AFLBS for this Fall, the 10 others who are in process, and the dozens who are showing strong interest. Pray that our Admissions team is granted success in their follow-up with these students, and that our Lord would raise up an additional 35 students for our Fall enrollment.
- Pray for the persecuted church, that we always are mindful of the connection we have as part of the church universal through the blood of Christ. May we continually uphold these brothers and sisters that their faith remains strong, that God be glorified, and that their witness in the most difficult of circumstances brings conversion to those who persecute them.
- Pray for pastors to be called and raised up by LORD. Our AFLC faces an urgent need for men to answer the call to parish ministry and we boldly seek that the Lord of the harvest draws these men to our Seminary. We are grateful to offer praise for the 28 men that have started seminary training since we have begun praying for 40 more pastors.
- Pray for our churches that are currently experiencing pastoral vacancy. May their call teams be granted wisdom, insight, and patience as they wait upon the LORD, and may the will of God be accomplished in the lives of those men seeking a call to a congregation.
- Pray on behalf of our AFLC leadership, including Staff, Faculty, Corporations and Boards. As effective leaders and stewards, may we always seek wisdom and discernment from the Lord, appeal always to the mercies of God, and look always to His Holy Spirit to guide and direct us in every decision.