10 Ways to Pray in Response to COVID-19

All updates on Living Word postponements and cancellations in light of COVID-19 will be posted at LWCCyork.com/corona. Please continue to check that page for updates.


As we face this unprecedented time in our lives and our world, we would like to invite you to pray.

Psalm 62:8 states that we are to “pour out our hearts to God, for He is our refuge.” Let’s keep leaning into Him.

  1. Pray that the drastic measures being taken will slow the spread of the virus.
  2. Pray for those most susceptible to contracting COVID-19: older adults and people with serious chronic medical conditions (heart disease, diabetes, lung disease).
  3. Pray for our neighbors: that we as Christians will be witnesses to them regarding how to sense God’s presence with us at all times in all ways (Jesus, Immanuel, God with us).
  4. Pray for families impacted by travel (outbound or inbound).
  5. Pray for our communities, workplaces, and schools.
  6. Pray for homes impacted by the loss of work, many in the service sectors (like restaurants, salons, etc.) and especially for single parents who already have a heavy load to lift and now carry more.
  7. Pray for our health-care system and medical professionals. (Please remember

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Soul Care Recap || guest blog by Connie Milchling

From my view it was amazing!  On Saturday, November 16, 620 women assembled in the Main Auditorium to carefully and prayerfully consider being “fearfully and wonderfully made”.  The morning was a picturesque display of Kingdom partnership as administrative, ambience, caterers, coffee-brewers, facilities, safety, presenters, speakers, teachers, tech-team, worship team members, and many ministry partners collectively and collaboratively used their gifts and abilities to serve with a laser-beam focus on SOUL CARE.

The final product felt like you were in the thin space between heaven and earth, while experiencing a tiny glimpse of the best celebration ever; “YOUR kingdom come, YOUR will be done, on earth as it is in heaven”.   Working together we did our best to encourage hearts, invigorate souls, motivate minds, and renew strength.  And it was wonderful to sit enthralled as Susy shared her pottery demonstration, Diana led worship and spoke, Becky and Kendall taught, and Michelle hosted. You could hear edifying conversations nearby as women were being captivated by God’s attentiveness to them.   One attendee gave me permission to share this note of thanks:

What a blessing Soul Care was to me and my two dear friends that I brought along. One is actively fighting breast

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Suffering as a Gift – Guest Blog by Connie Milchling

In September of 2004 my first husband died suddenly while working on a construction site at an orphanage in Guatemala. On a not-too-hot day, during a not-too-stressful moment, Brad dropped over, dying instantly at the age of 47. He had no prior signs of heart conditions, no pre-existing health issues, and no family history of coronary concerns.

He was literally serving Jesus one minute and standing in his presence the next; a great way to go home to glory, but a shocking way to become a widow. I spent months and months journaling (I call it prayer on paper) with my Bible nearby.

One week into the journey I stumbled across this verse in Philippians 1:29: “For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for him” (NIV 1984). The Message version says, “There’s far more to this life than trusting in Christ. There’s also suffering for him.  And the suffering is as much a gift as the trusting.” Really? The suffering is as much a gift as the trusting? How can that possibly be?

I wrestled with this text for quite some time. The imagery that …

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How Hope is Sustained || guest blog by Connie Milchling

As we conclude our four-part series on the Gift of Hope this may be the most important lesson. Most people wonder: How can we possibly sustain hope with all that’s going on in our world today? It seems as if every waking moment of every day we are inundated with news that has the potential to tear us down, wear us out, and cause our caring hearts to crumble.

But hope can be sustained. Not because of who we are or what we do, but because of who God is and what he has done, and is, doing.

Join us Monday evening, July 30 or Wednesday morning, August 1, as we look at one focused verse that has the potential to revolutionize the way you view hope and discover how hope will always be closer than you think!

To learn more or register please go to: lwccyork.com/hope/

 

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Why Hope is Needed || guest blog by Connie Milchling

In his widely acclaimed devotional book, My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers (1874–1917) writes about Gracious Uncertainty, declaring:

To be certain of God means that we are uncertain in all our ways, we do not know what a day may bring forth. This is generally said with a sigh of sadness; it should be rather an expression of breathless expectation. We are uncertain of the next step, but we are certain of God.”

Does that describe your life? Uncertain of the next step? Could you say you are certain of God, or would you like to be? Throughout Scripture we find story after story of people who have stepped out in faith with breathless expectation of what God will do with their life, even in the midst of uncertainty.

So, why is hope needed? That’s the topic we will explore week three of our four-part series on the Gift of Hope. Join us Monday evening, July 23 or Wednesday morning, July 25, to dig into God’s Word and discover how hope is vital for life.

Learn more or register today!

 

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Where Hope is Found || guest blog by Connie Milchling

David, as a shepherd-turned-king, had a rich and rewarding life. Then his son made a very bad choice that adversely impacted everyone in the family. Have you ever had that happen? Has someone in your sphere of influence chosen poorly, leaving you to deal with the mess?      

David found his way through this experience, and we’ll discover how he did it as we work our way through one of his heart-wrenching Psalms that has this in the center, “Find rest, o my soul, in God alone, my hope comes from him.”  

Want to discover where hope is found? That’s the question we will explore week two of our four-part series on the Gift of Hope. Join us Monday evening, July 16 or Wednesday morning, July 18, to dig into God’s Word and discover that hope is closer than you think!

Learn more or register today!

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When Hope is Lost || guest blog by Connie Milchling

Hope. It’s a word you will be hearing frequently this month through a new mid-size community starting this coming week. We are beginning a new mini blog series by guest blogger, Connie Milchling, to kick off this community (that she is leading). It’s our prayer that your soul is refreshed and we spark something within your heart, mind, and soul to connect with Jesus, our true source of hope.


As we read through the account of Paul, as a prisoner on board a ship en route to Rome, there is a verse tucked away in the recesses of Acts 27 that simply says, “When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days and the storm continued raging, we finally gave up all hope of being saved.” 

Have you ever felt that way? Like the storm of life is relentlessly raging? The sun and stars are failing to shine? You’re starting to think the only choice is to give up hope of ever being saved? You’re not alone! The Psalmist shares this distress when he cries out in Psalm 6:3, “My soul is in deep anguish. How long, Lord, how long?” 

What do we do when hope is lost? That’s …

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The Gift of Hope || guest blog by Connie Milchling

I love our mission statement, “Living Word is a grace-filled community where the messiness of life, the message of hope, and the beauty of Jesus converge.” At times I am in conversation with someone and feel the weight of how there’s not much we can do with the “mess.” It’s especially difficult when it comes to other people’s bad choices encroaching onto our lives. Sometimes they are burdened by the relentless news of unsettledness and uncertainty in the world or are simply worn down by the day in and day out struggles of life.

And yet there is always hope!

But just what is the message of hope and how can we cultivate it in our lives?

For 4 weeks this summer we will be looking at this consideration as we explore:

  • What do we do when hope is lost?
  • Where is hope found?
  • Why is hope needed?
  • How is hope sustained?

This brand new mid-size community will have live teaching and small-group discussion. We know summer gets full with fun and activities, so we are offering it for your convenience on Monday evenings, 6:30–8:00 pm or Wednesday mornings, 9:30–11:00 am starting July 9. This is open to anyone …

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Some Hard Things About Mother’s Day || guest blog by Connie Milchling

As Mother’s Day approaches, we would be remiss in not acknowledging that this day is not a joyous occasion for every woman. For some, it is a hard day. For others, it is a very difficult day.

Maybe it’s because you have (or had) a mom who was less than ideal, and the pain appears each year without relief.

Or perhaps you had a terrific mom, but she is no longer around for you to hear her voice.

Or maybe you are longing to be a mom, but that dream remains unfulfilled, so Mother’s Day appears like a billboard shouting, “YOU DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN!”

Or it lingers like a sympathy card, reminding you of your loss.

Infertility, miscarriages, stillborn births, high-risk pregnancies.

We understand and are so sorry for your heartache.

This article from Christianity Today may be helpful:

6 Ways to Survive Grief of Childlessness

I googled “hard things about Mother’s Day” and received 37,300,000 results in .57 seconds.

Women hoping for healing, waiting for marriage, undertaking adoption.

The list goes on and on.

Whether you are waiting for parenting, or parenting, step-parenting, foster-parenting, or grand-parenting, it often includes some serious challenges.

There are no easy answers to …

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A Time for Prayer || guest blog by Connie Milchling

This time of year, we begin seeing and hearing information about the National Day of Prayer. Many people ask if Living Word is participating in the event. The answer is “yes,” but in a creative way that is unique to us. First, a little history.

The National Day of Prayer was formed by a joint resolution of Congress and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman on April 17, 1952 and every president since has signed a proclamation to keep it going. In 1988, President Reagan established the first Thursday of May as the official recurring date that recognizes how prayer brings people together. This year, when the theme of UNITY was announced, I couldn’t help but wonder: Why just one day, and why only America? What if we expanded the length of time to multiple days and enlarged the reach to the world God loves so much? What if we created a prayer experience that would allow time for more people to come and pray?

As I began sharing this idea with other leaders and key ministry partners it made sense. And so, it is with great joy that the Prayer Ministry at Living Word invites you to …

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