GOD’S POWER AND THE BANNERMAN PARTNERS
Some months ago, someone proposed a brilliant idea for the Bannerman community: have an after-school program for the elementary children to fill the unproductive and unsupervised hours in their lives when many of their parents are at work.
The idea met with an enthusiastic initial response, but the project floundered when the person spearheading it left town shortly after the first meeting held to discuss it. The next time we met, things were a bit haphazard with everyone looking at one another and asking “Who’s in charge here?” The plan was further threatened when the local elementary school principal, a key advocate for the idea, had to take a leave of absence to care for her ill, aged mother.
At some point the group decided to incorporate all further discussion of this proposal into our regular Bannerman Partners meetings. I chair the Bannerman Partners; so, it was in this way that I found myself chairing, this past Wednesday morning, a meeting whose almost exclusive agenda was to discuss the after-school program. I had been a cheerleader and spectator for this idea. Now I was responsible to see progress made on it.
Several hours before the scheduled Bannerman Partners meeting which I was to chair, I asked our Wednesday morning prayer group to intercede for the proceedings. They prayed earnestly that God would work powerfully and surprise everyone in the room.
When the community leaders met later that morning, things did not start promisingly. I described the helter-skelter nature of the previous, after-school program meeting. I said that some people had taken assignments home from that meeting, but I didn’t know who, since it had not been recorded.
What happened next made it seem like the after-school ship would completely sink. The community league president announced, “I really don’t see how we can proceed on this matter, because the Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs of Edmonton are not represented here, and the lion’s share of our hopes rested with them.”
So we dithered for a while. We went on to what other business there was. Then, to our surprise, a representative of the Boys’ and Girls’ Club walked into the room, late for the meeting. In short order this person announced that her organization had secured funding to run an after-school program from January to June.
At our prayer meeting that morning, we had prayed that God would surprise the Bannerman Partners. He did. While further discussions will need to take place to figure out how to make this program sustainable for years to come, this is a welcome and huge first step.
I am sure that others who attended the Bannerman Partners gathering would simply say that we had a great meeting. I see what happened as a direct answer to prayer. We serve a wonderful God. –Pastor Tom
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