Tornadoes and Praying for Pleasant Grove

The night before last was a very active night for severe weather in our area, and last night was predicted to be the same, but thankfully was not. If you have been praying along with us through all the towns and cities we’ve covered so far, you may have recognized a lot of the places James Spann and others mentioned as being in the path of some of those tornadoes Monday night. Three of the cities who got directly hit, Graysville, Kimberly and Bessemer, we’ve prayed for on this blog. Follow those links if you want to revisit those prayers. Our prayers are with all of those who lost homes and property, and especially with the family and friends of the young man who was killed in Tuscaloosa.

Today we are praying for Pleasant Grove, who is no stranger to tornado activity. There are still scars in the town from the devastating tornado on April 8, 16 years ago, and they were one of the hardest hit communities in the April 27, 2011 tornado outbreak.

http://www.cityofpg.com

Located in Jefferson County

Mayor Jerry Brasseale

Established in 1889

Incorporated in January 1934

2010 population: 10, 110

  • Nicknamed “The Good Neighbor City”
  • Originally an agricultural community
  • Developed into a mining community after the opening of a coal mine in 1916
  • Incorporated in order to obtain Federal funds to build local water systems. The deep coal mines had undercut the area’s water table.
  • One of the Jefferson County communities hardest hit by the April 2011 tornadoes.

Isaiah 58:9-11 – “Then you will call, and the LORD will answer; You will cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am.’ If you remove the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger and speaking wickedness, and if you give yourself to the hungry and satisfy the desire of the afflicted, then your light will rise in darkness and your gloom will become like midday. And the LORD will continually guide you, and satisfy your desire in scorched places, and give strength to your bones; and you will be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.”

We call on the name of the LORD our God, Yahweh. We declare that there is no one like our God, who is Faithful and True in all of His ways. What He speaks, it shall be accomplished. We look to You for our every need, and You are our Shelter in every storm.

We lift the city of Pleasant Grove up to you today. May this city continue to be fully restored from the devastation it has endured from past tornado activity; not just physical restoration, but mental and emotional restoration as well. We pray that You, Lord God, would continually guide Mayor Brasseale and the city council as they seek to lead and develop their city. Cause this city to put aside everything that would hinder Your promises from being accomplished in it and through it. Cause them to embrace Your call to care for the afflicted and poor in greater ways than before.

We pray that You would indeed fulfill Your Word to the city of Pleasant Grove. Satisfy the desires of their hearts in You, even in the midst of hardship and uncertainty. Strengthen them in their innermost parts, so that they can know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge. The name “Pleasant Grove” makes me think of a well-watered garden, as it talks about in verse 11. So we pray that You would make Pleasant Grove live up to its name in every way possible. And may Your Church in this city be a constant source of Your Living Water.

Give them provision to accomplish all that You have purposed this city to do. Turn their eyes to You in the midst of storm and in the midst of prosperity. May Pleasant Grove be a city that glorifies You in all that it does. Amen.

How do you feel led to pray for this city today?

Praying for One of the Oldest Communities in Alabama

Greetings! Late last week, I had this post almost done and ready to publish, but I had to finish it up later, so I hit the “Save Draft” button (as I already had several times while working on the post) and closed it up. When I went back to it later, the post was gone, vanished into thin air. I even had a fellow (albeit much better and more well-known) blogger friend try to find it. I wanted to cry, and I couldn’t really remember what all I had typed. So, here you go. Praying for Pinson, Alabama. Again. I hope.

www.thecityofpinson.com

Located in Jefferson County

Mayor Hoyt Sanders

Incorporated March 30, 2004

Named Mount Pinson in 1852 after an area in Tennesse. Renamed Pinson in 1895

2010 population 7,163

  • One of the oldest communities in Alabama
  • Originally named Hagood Crossroads after a store owned by Robert Hagood. He was the son of Dr. Zachariah Hagood, an early settler who moved to the area following the War of 1812.
  • Shipping center for coal in the late 1800s
  • Home to Turkey Creek Nature Preserve
  • Reportedly home to one of the few known Woodland period (1000BC-!000AD) caves in Alabama
  • A series of articles on the history of Pinson and the surrounding area are posted on the Turkey Creek Nature Preserve website

Col. 2:8, 13-15 – “See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.” …..
“When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.”

Lord Jesus, we praise You for the triumph You have won over the enemy of our souls. Glory to You, for the display of Your love, mercy, justice, righteousness and power through Your death and resurrection! Thank You for canceling the debt of our sin through the cross, and for making us in alive in You through Your resurrection!

We lift up the city of Pinson, Alabama to You today, Lord. Let truth and righteousness reign over the city. We pray that, in Your name, Lord Jesus, every empty deception and tradition which currently reign in this city would be taken captive and have its power broken off the hearts and minds of the people of Pinson. I especially pray for Your Church in Pinson, to throw off every tradition of man which encumbers them and holds them back from being the Bride You have called them to be. Encourage those who are walking in truth to keep their eyes focused on You, who is the Author and Perfecter of their faith.

Show Yourself mighty on behalf of this city and its people, Lord Jesus. Make an open display of Your triumph over the forces of wickedness. Disarm the powers and principalities which stand in opposition to You over Pinson. Cause every one in this city to know that You have all power, authority and dominion, because You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.

We lift up Mayor Sanders and the city council to You, Beloved Savior. If they do not know You, we pray that You would reveal Yourself to them and draw them to Yourself. Let them know You as their Savior and Lord. We also pray that You would break off every spiritual force of darkness that would seek to hinder them in their efforts to make wise, righteous decisions for the city as well as in their personal lives. Let them see the salvation of the LORD on their behalf. (2 Chronicles 20:17)

For all these things, we ask in Your name, that You would be glorified in Pinson, Alabama. Amen.

Once again, this went a different direction than I was expecting. How is the Lord prompting you to pray? We would love for you to leave a comment with a passage or prayer that the Lord brings to your mind, either for Pinson or for your own city.

 

City on a Lake – Praying for Pell City

You gotta love Alabama’s weather! Who would have thought that in the middle of April, we would have to get our jackets and sweaters today! That is crazy!

Meanwhile, we are praying for Pell City today. First, a few facts:

www.pell-city.com

Located in St. Clair County on the shores of Lake Logan Martin

Mayor: Joe Funderburg

Founded in 1890

Incorporated on May 6, 1891

Named for George H. Pell, president of the East and West Alabama Railroad

2010 population: 12, 695

  • The largest city in St. Clair County
  • Developed by the Pell City Iron and Land Company
  • One of 2 county seats in St. Clair County
  • Following a financial crisis in 1893-94, the failing city was purchased by Sumter and Lydia Cogswell for $3,000
  • In 1902, the Pell City Manufacturing Company, which later became Avondale Mills, was built by Sumter Cogswell
  • In 1956 Pell City annexed the towns of Eden and Oak Ridge

Isaiah 45:2-3,5-6 – “I will go before you and make the rough places smooth; I will shatter the doors of bronze and cut through their iron bars. I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden wealth of secret places, so that you will know that it is I, the LORD, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name.” …
“I am the LORD and there is no other; besides Me there is no God. I will gird you, though you have not known Me; that men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun that there is no one besides Me, I am the LORD, and there is no other.”

Lord God of Israel, You are the one true God, and there is no other. You are our God and our King. We worship You with all that we are and all that we have, because You alone are worthy of all honor, power, glory and praise.

We lift up Pell City to You, Lord God. We declare that You are the One True God of Pell City, Alabama. There is none other. We pray that the people of this city would know You, and that they would know the only way to gain access to You is through Your Son, Jesus Christ. Cause them to know You and to praise Your name from dawn till dusk. And even in the darkest night.

Lord, we ask that You would reveal to Your people in Pell City the treasures hidden in darkness. For every storm of life, every tragic loss, every hardship of every kind, we pray that You would show them the treasure of the revelation of more of Yourself that can only be found in those dark places in life.

You have called Pell City by name for Your plans and purposes. You have redeemed it once when it was on the brink of financial ruin, and so we know Your plan is not done for this city. In the name of Jesus, we call forth God’s perfect plan for the city, and we cancel every plan of the enemy to hold it back from God’s purposes. We declare in Jesus’ name that Pell City would be a city girded on all sides by the very presence of the LORD. Tear down the strongholds’ of unrighteousness in that city. Father, King Cyrus was used of You even though He did not know You. I pray that would not be true of Pell City. We pray that You would use them to fulfill Your purposes in the earth, and that that they would also have the honor and joy of knowing You.

For Mayor Funderburg, we ask that You would cause him to know You. We pray that every city leader would know You and follow after You. We pray that You would go before them in all that they do for Pell City, and in every decision they make, and make those paths smooth and clear for them. We pray for godly faith and wisdom to guide them through the path You have ordained for their city.

In Jesus’ matchless name we pray.

We would love to hear your input in the comments section. Either join us in prayer by typing it out, or share a Scripture the Lord laid on your heart, or leave a question or comment.

 

Praying for Pelham, Alabama

I have been looking forward to this one for a while now, because my family and I live in Pelham! I love this city and the sense of community that exists here. The city has enjoyed lots of progress over the last few years, thanks to wise leadership and the Lord’s blessing.

www.pelhamonline.com

Mayor Gary W. Waters

Shelby County

Incorporated in 1964

  • First known as Shelbyville in 1818, when the county court was established in what is now Pelham
  • County seat from 1820 until 1826
  • Sometime after the Civil War, it was renamed Pelham in honor of Major John Pelham, who fought in over 60 battles in the Civil War and was killed in the Battle of Kelly’s Ford in 1863.
  • In the early 1960’s, the city of Alabaster tried to annex Pelham, which led to the citizens of Pelham seeking to become incorporated.

Well, this verse is different from the type we normally pray from, and this is another one of those times where I’m thinking, “Huh? How are we supposed to pray from that?” So here goes….

**Also, because this is my city, my use of pronouns is more first person. I tried to stop it, but it kept happening, so I just rolled with it.**

Song of Solomon 3:2 – “I must arise now and go about the city; in the streets and in the squares I must seek him who my soul loves. I sought him but did not find him.”

Beloved One, we love You and adore You. You are altogether beautiful in the splendor of Your holiness. Your glory is unassailable. You invite us to share in Your glory for Your name’s sake. You invited us to sit with You in the heavenly places so that You may show the riches of Your love in kindness toward us. (from Eph. 1) What can we do in response but to fall down and worship You?

Lord Jesus, You have established nations and cities to share and to reflect Your glory. So we pray that You would enable Pelham, Alabama to do just that. We pray that the citizens of this city would recognize You as the One whom their soul was created to love. Give them a passion and desire to seek You. Remove the blinders that are on our eyes that hide You from us, or distort what You really look like and who You really are. Cause us to lay down the things which keep us from You, Lord Jesus. Turn our eyes from looking at vain, empty things, and let us look full in Your wonderful face. May this city be known as a city that seeks after You in all that it does.

Unlike the verse in Song of Solomon who could not find who she was looking for, we thank You that You can be found. Jer. 29:13 says, “You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” Let the city of Pelham, and the people of Pelham, find You. Cause us to seek You with all our hearts. Thank You for the promise of Your Word and that we can always trust in it.

Lord, we lift up Mayor Gary Waters to you. Grant him a passion for You that directs every decision he makes for our city and even for his personal life. Protect him from the evil one. Deliver him from temptation and the plans of the enemy. Set Mayor Waters’ feet on the firm foundation of Your Word. Let him know that You are with him and will direct his steps when he seeks after You. We pray for grace and truth to permeate everything he says and does. We pray that Mayor Waters and the city council would enjoy a healthy working relationship, and that together they would seek Your will for our city.

I also pray for the civil servants of Pelham. Protect them. Keep their hearts from becoming embittered by the difficult things they have to see and do. As they go through “in the streets and in the squares” of this city, let them find You. Please let their minds be renewed and refreshed through the power of Your Word and Your Spirit.

We pray all of these things in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

How are you feeling led to pray? I pray each of you would seek Jesus today, and that He would be found by you.

 

 

 

Praying for Parrish

www.townofparrish.org

Located in Walker County

  • Land area: 2.1 square miles
  • Population in 2010: 1,268; in 2012: 978

Mayor Cedrick Ramsey

  •  He became the Mayor Pro Tem when the previous mayor resigned in the middle of his second term in July 2013 for health reasons

Incorporated in October 1922

  • Founded in 1878
  • First known as Hewitt, after the first post office established there in 1878
  • Also known as Jonesboro at the same time, after the first post master
  • Name changed to Parrish in 1891 after the first telegraph officer
  • Known as a coal-mining town

Recent leadership is credited for turning the town of Parrish around, reducing the formerly high crime rate, improving local roads and government buildings, and becoming a model of small-town development.

The town experienced a lot of change in a short period of time in 2013 when the previous mayor and a few other city leaders resigned from their positions.

I felt led to two passages for Parrish:

Psalm 127:1 – “Unless the LORD builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; unless the LORD guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain.”
Psalm 89:14-16 – “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; lovingkindness and truth go before You. How blessed are the people who know the joyful sound! O LORD, they walk in the light of Your countenance. In Your name they rejoice all the day, and by Your righteousness they are exalted.”

LORD God,
You are altogether glorious in Your holiness. You dwell in inapproachable light (I think that’s a verse, but I can’t find it at the moment). Your reign in righteousness and justice. There is no shadow of turning with You, as the hymn “Great is Thy Faithfulness” says. In Your love and mercy, You cover us with Your robes of righteousness, and we are in awe and profoundly, eternally grateful.

Today, we lift up the town of Parrish, Alabama before You, Lord God. We pray that the huge strides that have been made in recent years would not be in vain. Cause Mayor Ramsey and the current town leaders to put their eyes on You as they govern their town. We pray Mayor Ramsey and the councilmen and -women would rejoice in Your name, that they would walk in the light of Your countenance, and that by Your righteousness they would be exalted.

We pray that You would establish a firm foundation of Your righteousness and justice for this town. If there is any injustice anywhere in this town, we pray You would bring it into the light of Your truth, and bring Your righteousness to bear on those situations. Set up intercessors as Your watchmen over Parrish; please guard and protect this town, Lord. Build it up to be all that You have called it to be. In the name of Jesus Christ, we cancel every plan of the enemy to hold this city back from the Lord’s will for it, and we cancel every word curse that has been spoken over Parrish. We speak the blessing of the name of the LORD over Parrish, Alabama.

Finally, we pray that You would encourage the hearts of the people of Parrish. Change is hard, and last year it sounds like they experienced a lot of change all at once with key people in leadership. Cause them to look to You and put their trust and hope for their town in You alone. Bless the people not only with provision for their physical needs, but also with a personal relationship with You through Your Son. Cause this town and its people to prosper according to Kingdom prosperity for Your glory.

We pray all of this in Your holy name, Amen.

We’ve all experience moments of great upheaval and change, and so we can relate to what that felt like for Parrish. How does that prompt you to pray for them today?