Take Courage, Leeds!

Website http://www.leedsalabama.gov/default.aspx

Located in Jefferson, St. Clair, and Shelby Counties

Mayor David Miller

Incorporated April 27, 1887

Named for the industrial city of England

2010 Population 11,773

  • Early settlers were European immigrants and Cherokees

  • Originally named Cedar Grove which was changed to Oak Ridge in 1869

  • Notable native: Charles Barkley, Basketball Hall of Famer

  • Places of interest

    • Barber Motor Sports Park

    • Bass Pro Shops Outlet

    • The Shops At Grand River

There are two other place that I personally love in Leeds. One is a restaurant called Rusty’s Bar-b-q. It’s fabulous, with a super friendly owner and staff, and they have won several awards for their food. The other place I love is Cahaba Clayworks and Earthborn Studios. Tena Payne is the owner and artist. Her pottery dishes are used in some high-end restaurants, such as the Hot and Hot Fish Club and one in…Las Vegas, I think.  They offer different types of pottery classes. I won a 6-week class there several years ago, and absolutely loved it! You can also buy some of Tena’s fabulous pottery from her studio!

I also noticed their city motto is “City of Valor”. I didn’t find any story that explains that motto, but found it interesting. I tried looking up some verses on valor, but I found ones for courage, instead. Since it’s a very close synonym (is there any difference between the definitions of the two?), we’ll go with it. On Blue Letter Bible, I noticed an interesting pattern. Most of the time that the word courage is used, it is by the Lord and/or Jesus, telling someone to take courage.
“But now, take courage, Zerubbabel,” declares the LORD, “take courage also, Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and all you people of the land take courage,” declares the LORD, :and work, for I am with you,” declares the LORD of hosts.” – Hag. 2:4
“Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralytic, ‘Take courage, son; your sins are forgiven.'” – Matt. 9:2
“But Jesus turning and seeing her said, ‘Daughter, take courage; your faith has made you well.'” – Matt. 9:22
“But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘Take courage; it is I, do not be afraid.” – Matt. 14:27
“….In the world you will have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33
“….the LORD stood at his side and said, “Take courage.” – Acts. 23:11

There were lots more, and in almost every use of the word throughout the Bible, it was given as a command to take courage. Let’s pray from these verse snippets for Leeds.

Lord God, we praise You because You are strong and mighty. You are our Mighty Warrior, our Defender, and our Deliverer. The battle belongs to You, and You have already won the victory over sin and death, and over every tribulation in this world. Hallelujah!!

We lift up the city of Leeds, Alabama to You, today. May the people of Leeds take courage and work diligently at what the Lord has called them to do. May they be people of faith in the One True God who forgives sins, heals our infirmities, and who has overcome the world. We pray that You would break off generational yokes of fear, and that You would bring the restoration of courage to their hearts.

We pray for Mayor Miller and all the city leaders. May they take courage in You to lead well and make wise decisions on behalf of the city as well as in every part of their lives. May they conduct themselves in such a way that You stand by their side. Let them feel Your presence in their lives.

We pray for the Church in Leeds to take courage and to wait and trust in You. Give them faith to take courage so that they can stand and see the salvation of the LORD on their behalf (from 2 Chron. 20:17). Enable them to step out of their boats and walk on the waves of their circumstances. Bring peace to their storms. May Your presence be very real to each of them. Give them courage to rise up and be the Church – to be Your hands and feet and heart to their city.

There is so much more we could pray, God. Show us how to pray courageously for our cities and communities, so that together we can see transformation, and the Kingdom of Heaven being lived out on the earth – as much as it’s possible until You return.  Amen.

What is your favorite “courage” Bible verse?


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