Saturday, August 8, 2009

Area revivalists pray for God's presence at meeting

By TOMIE LUNSFORD
Telegram Staff Writer

Revival is here.
'And the speed is picking up,' said Pat Dalrymple, coordinator of the Central Texas Prayer Network. 'It's like someone's putting a foot on the gas petal.'
Her remarks opened the Aug. 4 prayer rally at St. James United Methodist Church in Temple. More than 30 people from 12 churches attended to praise Jesus in anticipation of the upcoming Just Give Me Jesus revival.
More than 11,000 people are registered to attend, and at least 700 of those are from the Temple-Belton area.
Part of the revival's attraction is its keynote speaker - Anne Graham Lotz, the daughter of Billy Graham the evangelist. Her last Texas program took place in 2004 near Dallas.
'She's an outstanding speaker and a strong Christian,' said Lynn Ringstaff of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Temple. 'She has a God-given gift of bringing the spirit of revival wherever she goes. It'll bring more hearts to Jesus, and I want to be a part of it.' For others like Annette Snowden of Memorial Baptist Church in Temple, the Just Give Me Jesus event will be an opportunity to bond with others.
'I have very seldom got to be outside of may faith,' Mrs. Snowden said. 'All I know is that it's a blessing when we can all be together, love one another and be in a time of revival.'
By 'other faiths,' Mrs. Snowden was referring to the many denominations of Christianity.
But Julie Cox, outreach volunteer with the Just Give Me Jesus campaign, said non-Christian faiths are welcome nonetheless.
'It's open to all,' Ms. Cox said. 'And it's free for everyone. Our only goal is to renew faith and bring new hearts to Christ.'
Just Give Me Jesus enthusiasts have been anticipating this year's revival since April 2008.
'Churches around the state have held prayer rallies every month,' said Harriet Johnson of Waco, co-chair of the Just Give Me Jesus prayer committee.
In Temple, host churches have included St. James, First United Methodist, Covenant Lutheran and Bethel.
As of Aug. 1, there were 40 days left to Sept. 11, the big day of the revival.
'And for each day, there's a prayer based on a different name of Jesus,' Ms. Cox said.
The daily prayers and accompanying Scriptures were pre-printed in a pamphlet she distributed to the folks at St. James.
Today's prayer, for example, is '(We pray that) we would see Jesus: the Door.' A side-note says it comes from John 10:9 - 'I am the Door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.'
The 30plus days of prayer that remain are no chore to people like Ms. Dalrymple. It's a labor of love.
'The Central Texas Prayer Network has been praying for revival for 10 years,' Ms. Dalrymple said. 'This event with Ann Lentz is part of the answer to that prayer.'

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