Prayer breakfast at South YMCA
By David Freeze
Lucas Safrit, president of the Youth Challenge International at Carson High School, wanted to come hear the message at the South Rowan Community Prayer Breakfast and enjoy the fellowship of those who believe in the power of prayer. He had encouraged others to get up a little earlier and join him at the J. Fred Corriher South Rowan YMCA on Friday by 6:30 a.m, then have breakfast, get energized and then head off to school.
Y Service Club President Gay Roberts and her husband, Dave, attended a National Day of Prayer breakfast at the JF Hurley YMCA and shared with her husband that they should provide the spark to have a community breakfast at the South YMCA. The Y Service Club worked out the details and Friday morning was the culmination of several months of planning.
Keynote Speaker Jim Morgan, CEO of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc. , shared his belief in the power of prayer. Morgan grew up visiting his grandmother, affectionately called Apple, every day. When away at college or in the military, he called her every day. Once back home, the daily visits began again before Apple started getting sicker and less energetic. Morgan remembered that on a beautiful morning while sitting at his desk, a powerful need to visit his grandmother came over him. Apple knew him when he arrived, but she couldn't communicate.
"I realized that not my will but God's will had to be done, and I asked Him to take her where she needs to be," Morgan said.
At the end of his prayer, she squeezed his hand and passed away.
Morgan asked everyone to consider five thoughts on this day:
g Don't let breakfast be the only time for prayer during the day. Anytime is fine, no matter what the need.
g Don't leave your faith and prayers at the doorstep. Bring them inside the school or workplace through the front door. Be Christian wherever you are.
g Pray for our country. Our country is not running to God but we need to be. Pray that God heals our land.
g Have an undying commitment to God's will for your life. Give him time to tell you what he wants. Pursue a passion.
g Slow your life down. Don't run through your life. You can find time for Him every day. Walk more slowly, savor these times, and bow more often.
"Do these things and you will be so richly blessed," said Morgan, who has also served as the CEO of Wachovia Securities and Interstate Johnson Lane. He has taught Sunday School for 37 years and has a lifelong commitment to youth and education. Morgan is also a devoted family man who lives with his wife, Peggy, in Winston Salem. He has three children and two grandchildren.
David Franks, pastor of First Reformed Church in Landis, led a prayer session. He asked those in attendance to pray for our leaders, military, the nation's great uncertainty and world unrest. Franks also asked that we pray to heal our land and choose leaders who seek Him without thoughts of personal gain. Franks reminded everyone, "As long as we walk with God, we will never walk alone."
Worship Arts Pastor Jeff Chewning and Youth Pastor Shane Roberts of First Reformed Church provided special music.
While the program was open to all ages, Roberts and the Y Service Club wanted to make attendance a possibility for students. A large group of Carson High School students attended.
"We need to talk to God and thank Him for everything we have," Connor Christman said. "I had a similar experience with my own grandmother."
Gavin McHenry added, "We need to be in a constant state of prayer. I will take prayer into the front door of my school."
Twins Hanna and Dalton Wellmon echoed the thoughts of their friends. Hanna said, "I will make my prayers less selfish and I know that God needs to be a part of every day." Dalton enjoyed the opportunity for the prayer breakfast and added his thoughts, "I don't need to leave God on the outside. I haven't been to church lately and I will definitely be there more now."
Organizers were pleased with the first South Rowan Community Prayer Breakfast.
"We didn't know how many to prepare for. Nearly every seat was filled and we had some on the bleachers. We will definitely do this again," Gay Roberts said.
Y Service Club past President Bruce Miller added, "When we sat down to plan, we couldn't have known how well the prayer breakfast would turn out. This has been a wonderful morning."
Perhaps Jenny Buchanan, South Rowan YMCA Fitness Director and Special Olympics Coordinator, summed it all up when she said, "This is the greatest program the Y has put on. We're gathering the community to seek God."