To celebrate Sarah Jackson Shelton’s ten years as pastor of Baptist Church of the Covenant, Birmingham, Alabama, Bridget Rose collected prayers offered by church members and friends during the church’s worship services from September 8, 2002 to September 9, 2012. Those prayers became Prayers of the People. The book was recently released by Insight Press. Below is the prayer voiced by Betty Lou Land on Sarah’s tenth anniversary Sunday.
“Creator of all, one of your extraordinary gifts to us as your followers is the reason we celebrate today at Baptist Church of the Covenant. Sarah Jackson Shelton brings your love to us through her abiding strong faith and love of you, O God. She has a deep understanding of you, shown to us through her selfless caring for others, kindness to those in need, limitless giving, ongoing patience, endless compassion and wisdom in the ways of God.
Pastor Sarah’s leadership, high standards, bravery, and loyalty shake us to awaken to possibilities for your church. This gladdens our hearts and touches out souls, leading us toward the light. Thank you for her encouragement and empowerment to each of us.
Through her ministry our lives are made richer. with grateful hearts, we ask your blessings on her, her family, and upon us, your people, O Creator! Now we unite our hearts and our voices to pray together the prayer that Jesus taught us, “Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.”
You can order your copy of Prayers of the People from Insight Press.