Praying for Steele, AL

Located in northeastern St. Clair County

Mayor John “Denney” Wilcox

Incorporated in 1952

Named for Joshua Toliver Steele, who donated land to the city and was the first station agent

2010 population 1,043

  • Early settlers were Revolutionary War veterans who arrived around 1814
  • A Methodist church and stage coach stop appeared in the 1820’s

Home to Horse Pens 40 – Alabama’s Premier Outdoor Nature Park and “The Home of the South’s Bluegrass Music”

Home to the Alabama International Dragway  (apparently my spellcheck isn’t Southern enough to recognize Dragway as a real word. It is insisting I change it to two words.)

Home to Steele Orchard – My family and I visited Steele Orchard last year. The people there are super friendly, and we were able to taste several varieties of apples. It was a fun trip. They told us it’s unique to have an apple orchard this far South, because a good apple harvest depends a lot on cool weather. To make up for the lack of cool weather, they have devised some innovative ideas, and use grafting techniques, to create apples that will do better in our climate. They can also graft seedlings together in such a way that one apple tree can grow up to 3 different kinds of apples, and is self-pollinating. If you buy one apple tree that only has one kind of apple tree on it, you have to make sure there are other apple trees nearby for cross-pollination, or you won’t get apples. It was a fun and very educational visit.

Because I am sometimes a bit corny, I couldn’t help but think of verses that have to do with apples and races, in light of those last two points above.  And since there are no verses that have to do with races AND apples, I want to go with 2 different passages as we pray for Steele.

Psalm 17:7-8 – “Wondrously show Your lovingkindness, O Savior, of those who take refuge at Your right hand from those who rise up against them. Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me in the shadow of Your wings.”

Hebrews 12:1 – “Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”

Praise You, our Lord and Savior, for Your wonderful, everlasting love for us! You are a shelter for us and You hide us because of Your great love for us. Not because we deserve it, but only because You choose to love us with an infinite, gracious, merciful love!

We pray that You would show Your wondrous lovingkindness to the town of Steele, Alabama, Lord. Establish this town in Your righteousness, justice and truth because of Your great love and Your purposes for Steele and the people who live there. Lord, I pray that every person who lives there would find refuge in You. We pray this especially for those who have suffered injustice and abuse. Show Yourself as THE Father to the fatherless and as a Husband to the widows.  God, let them know that Your eye is on them and that You see and You care and will work for their good.

Lord, in a culture that is all about performance and being the best, there is tremendous pressure on everyone from business owners to politicians, to church leaders, to parents and everyone in between to do whatever it takes to rise to the top. Father, for the people of Steele, would you change their perspective, and cause them to look to the only prize that matters, which is laid up for us in Heaven? Show them how to lay aside every pressure the world has laid on them and enable them to only run the course that You have set before them. When they do so, I pray that You would pour out provision and blessing on them and what You have called them to do – whether it be as a parent, a teacher, a business owner, a preacher, an artist, etc. We especially pray this for Mayor Wilcox.

Thank You, Lord for Your Word. Thank You for teaching us how to pray, and for hearing and answering our prayers. We ask that You would bless the town of Steele for Your name’s sake. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

There is incredible power in corporate prayer – when we lift up our voices together in prayer for a united purpose. To pray from our hearts is essential, but to also express that unity and agreement with our spoken (or typed) words I believe makes it even more powerful. I was recently reminded of this at a prayer gathering sponsored by Mission Birmingham. Would you consider taking a minute of your time to add your words to our prayers for Steele, or any of the other municipalities we have on the blog, by leaving them in the comments section? Together, we can raise up a concert of prayer for our communities and see how God will transform them because we have called upon Him.

 

Praying for Springville, AL

www.springvillealabama.org

Located in St. Clair County, 30 miles northeast of Birmingham

Mayor William Isley, Jr.

Incorporated in 1880

Named for its freshwater springs

2010 population 4,080

  • Native Americans and settlers traveling through the region often stopped by the freshwater springs
  • Settlement began in the mid 1810s
  • Originally called Big Springs, then named Pinkhill in 1833. Name changed to Springville in 1834.
  • First church established in 1817
  • Has been the site of filming for two movies: The Verne Miller Story (1987) and Rustin (2001)

Micah 6:8-9a – “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? The voice of the LORD will call to the city–and it is sound wisdom to fear Your name.”

Lord God, You are high and lifted up. Your glory and majesty fill up all of everything. You are righteous, holy and just. You invite us into relationship with You, and You give us the charge to carry Your glory, righteousness and justice with us into the earth. Cause us to be faithful to that charge.

We pray for the city of Springville today, Lord. Thank You for the rich history this city enjoys, and the regard they have for their history, as displayed with the many registered historical buildings they have there. Thank You for the sense of pride the citizens have for their community and how it has helped shape Springville into the lovely city that it is.

We also pray, though, that their civic pride would not blind anyone to Your hand that has allowed Springville to be all that it is and will be. We pray this city would be a city of humility, of considering others before themselves, and acknowledging the Lord alone as worthy of honor and glory and praise. (All of us need to do more of that, Lord.) Let Springville be known as a place of true kindness and mercy toward their fellowmen, standing apart from a world that is so unkind and merciless. And we pray that Your holy justice would permeate this city, and be a part of every part of society and community in Springville.

We pray for Mayor Isley to be a man of humble integrity who loves You with all his heart, soul, strength and mind, and to love others as himself. Empower him to walk in humility and to follow Your call to do justice, love kindness and to walk humbly with You.

Father, You have established this city for Your purposes. Let Springville hear You calling to it, and grant them wisdom to respect and revere Your name. Amen.

Springville is a well-known city. How is the Lord prompting you to pray? Let me encourage you to add a comment with your prayer or a verse of Scripture. When you do that, we are joining our voices together for these municipalities in prayer, which gives them the power of unity and agreement which pleases the Lord and affects His heart toward the object of our prayers.

Speak a Blessing Over Snead, Alabama

Located in northeastern Blount County

Mayor Curtis Painter

Founded in 1853

Incorporated in 1966

Named for John Snead, the first postmaster

2010 population: 835

  • Settled as early as 1839
  • First industry was a water-powered flour and grist mill, build next to the Warrior River by Dr. G. W. White in 1874. Dr. White also built a store in the community.
  • First post office opened in 1882

Proverbs 11:11 – “By the blessing of the upright a city is exalted, but by the mouth of the wicked it is torn down.”

Lord God, You are righteous. Your words are true and righteous altogether. By the shed blood of Your Son, You have also covered us in robes of righteousness, while removing from us the filthy rags of our iniquity and sin.

Therefore, as Your righteous people, we speak a blessing over the town of Snead, Alabama today and its surrounding communities. We pray that You would exalt this town and those in it who are covered in robes of righteousness. We pray that uprightness and truth would be welcomed in every arena of commerce, politics, religion, arts, health care, and into every home in Snead.

In the name of Jesus, we cancel every curse that has been spoken over Snead and its surrounding communities, and we plead the blood of Jesus over every curse that has been brought on this town through the deeds of wickedness. Deliver this town from everything that has been put on it by the Evil One. Raise up the standard of the power of the blood of Christ over these people, and by Your grace and mercy, establish them in righteousness and justice.

We pray for Mayor Painter and speak a blessing over him and his leadership team in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Give him a heart that beats after You, and establish him and the office of mayor in righteousness, uprightness and truth. We plead the blood of Jesus over him and the office of mayor, and ask that You would break off every word curse that has been spoken over him.

Lord God, cause all of us to be more aware of the power of our words, and to be diligent to speak life and not death; blessing and not cursing; truth and not lies. Amen.