IDOP at West Side Christian Church

by Charles Cherry

We had a wonderful time of prayer last evening at West Side Christian Church in Springfield, IL. A few more than 60 people showed up, which is about what I was expecting. It would have been great to see more people attend, as well as more of the church leadership, but I am thankful for all who did take time from their busy schedules to be there.

Many people thanked me for how well organized the event was. My usual response was “I had a lot of help!” Well, now I want to officially recognize those who helped with event, in case anyone who attended happens to read this blog entry.

I am especially thankful for MaryAnn, my wonderful wife, without whom this event never would have occurred. She helped me gather materials, do research, and collect specific items for prayer. She spends many hours helping me in so many ways, and she is content to stay in the background while people pat me on the back. She sacrifices a lot so that I can do the things that the Lord has called me to do, and she helps me do those things well. I love her so much.

I am extremely thankful for Palal, who was willing to come and share part of his powerful testimony about Christian life in Burma. He has been with us for seven months, and it seems like every other day that I learn something new and profound about this humble young man. He is teaching MaryAnn and I so much.

A BIG thank you goes out to John Fidler, Dan Stewart, MaryAnn Cherry, Steve Mozely, Caren Hughs, Matt Leonard, and Steve Stewart for leading prayers. Thank you to Palal for leading our singing. Thank also goes out to Deb Knowles who served us by greeting everyone with her wonderful attitude and beautiful smile. The girls from the Young Adult Ministry did an excellent job decorating the room, which helped prepare our hearts and minds to worship God and have an attitude of prayer. Thanks also to Cindy Lash, our Director of Adult Education, and Dave Miller, Director of Administration, who represented our church staff.

And again, thank you to all who came and prayed – that was what the evening was all about, after all.

I am very encouraged, and I’m looking forward with great anticipation, at what God is continuing to do in the hearts and minds of the people at West Side in the area of world missions. Eddie Lowen, our Senior Minister, has a great vision for helping the poor and needy of Nairobi, Kenya, and under his leadership and inspiration, West Side members have adopted over 400 children from a single community in the slums of Nairobi. West Side, and a few other churches in our fellowship, have adopted the whole community, and are providing many funds for schools, clean water wells, and a host of other much needed items for these beautiful people.

God’s richest blessings to all who were involved in IDOP, either at West Side or at one of the innumerable other IDOP gatherings around the globe. We need to remember our persecuted brothers and sisters every day of the year, not just on the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church.