August 16, 2016

Pray for Pirates

Amid the various back-to-school traditions of churches, one congregation has struck gold. They tap into the community’s strong support for the schools – and particularly for its athletics – by offering yard signs: Pray for a Pirate. Pray for a Titan. Pray for a Panther.

In the week before the special school kick-off Sunday service, the church’s front lawn is full of these signs – a powerful testament for passersby of the church’s connection to the community. Who doesn’t want to pray for young people as they return to school?

The church also invites a few student-athletes to speak during worship about the role that faith plays in their lives.

This outreach is brilliant on many levels. It shows support for students, from kindergarten to senior. It reflects the congregation’s commitment to the community, a tacit acknowledgment that life is more than just Sunday morning. I suspect the pews will be full on this Sunday – and perhaps with folks who don’t normally come and maybe a few who will decide to attend the next Sunday and beyond.

And this initiative brings the church’s value of prayer to yards in every neighborhood. It’s not uncomfortably pushy. It doesn’t promote a particular denomination (or faith). It’s a simple ask: Pray.

As a country, we are heading into yard-sign season with November’s election just a few months away. In the vitriolic climate, I wonder what would happen if we all decided to forego political yard signs and embraced this type instead. Pray for a Bluebird. Pray for a Colonel. Pray for a neighbor. Above all: Pray.

Don't miss a blog post! Subscribe via email or RSS, using the grey box on the upper right.