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Sunday, March 24, 2019

Holding Your Head Up in Church When You feel Rejected

(To get to the beginning of this series click here)

It was during the Brownsville Revival when our prayer meetings started heating up.   We were praying every Tuesday night and would occasionally hold 24-hour prayer meetings.  These meetings were so anointed.  God was there.  The prayer room was thick with the presence of the Holy Spirit.  When you closed your eyes and prayed you felt as if you were transported to a whole other place.  It was just incredible.   God was answering prayers and we added more prayer times.  More and more people were coming.  We moved from the prayer room to the sanctuary.  Then someone had an impromptu prayer meeting at their house, which turned into a weekly event.  Not that it was bad, it was actually a great thing to have happen!  But in doing so less and less people came to the church to pray. They favored going to the house prayer meetings instead.  

I remember at first feeling so mad about it.  Then I felt rejected.  I thought people didn't want to come to our prayer meetings because of the way we ran them, or maybe it was the way we prayed, or had other people pray.  I had so many thoughts go through my head about what we might be doing wrong.  We even tried to make our meeting like the others.  Then I started to do what I still do when I’m feeling unwanted, I retreated to my own little world.  We kept the prayer meetings at church going as long as we could, even if it was just my husband and I that would show up to pray.  We prayed for the church, the pastors, the city, everything we could think of.  Even the other prayer meetings.  It was especially hard when there was talk about the other meetings during a service.  It was like a punch in the stomach.  I cried out to God.  Asking him why and what did I do wrong?  There was no answer to that then.   I retreated more and more, until finally a decision was made to end the Tuesday night Prayer Meetings.  We just could not compete with the others.   In hindsight maybe we should not have stopped those meetings, but we still had a lot of learning to do.  Eventually the other prayer meetings ended too.  

It was a difficult time for us at church after that.  We struggled to go to church then. When we got there, we would quickly find our seats and then quickly leave after service.  We weren’t serving in any other ministry for a time after that either. Honestly, we didn’t want to.   We felt as if we had put our all into that one ministry and then it was taken away.  We again questioned if we should stay.  Our Pastor would try to  encourage us by telling us we were going to make it.  We also had 4 kids to think about.   Our kids were involved in ministries and most of their friends were there at the church.  We just could not pull them away from the life that they knew.    We decided to hold our heads up and stay in church.  We still believed that God called us to grow in this church.    We pressed in.  We shook the devil off by reading and praying more in our own prayer closet.  It was through that time that I was learning what God was trying to teach me.   I had to get rid of “Me” in the ministry.   The prayer meetings weren’t about me.   They were supposed to be about Him.   Now I can admit that my head got a little bigger.   The amount of people that would show up and the way God would use me to pray for people was quite an experience.  I can also say that it didn’t end solely because of me.   There should not be a competition between ministries in this way.  We serve in ministries to serve God.  We should not try to “out serve” our brothers and sisters.   It should be about serving together.  We all have gifts and should serve in the capacity of those gifts but, remember that it is God who equips those he calls.  We should serve with a humble spirit.  It is a privilege to be used in any ministry, in any capacity.    

When a door closes on a ministry, we should not leave the Church.  There is so much more that needs to be done!  God wants to continue to use us.  It just may be in a different area.  We need to learn to be teachable and maintain a humble spirit.  We can’t let our ego get in the way of what He wants to do.     Humbly step aside, even if you think you’ve put your all into it.   Let God do what He’s going to do.  It's always exciting to see what He does next.   

Click here to read the next in the series 

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