Capri Connection: Prayer Warriors hold picnic to gather momentum for battle
Capri Christian Church held its second annual Prayer Warriors’ Picnic on Thursday, May 4 at Mackle Park; the picnic just happened to coincide with the National Day of Prayer.
The Prayer Warriors program began on Feb. 7, 2013, a little over four years ago, with 22 volunteers who signed up to be part of an e-mail prayer chain at Capri Christian Church. Tabatha Dawes, Women’s Ministry leader, approached Kris Kugler with the idea. Under Kugler, the program has grown to 97 warriors who make time in their day to pray specifically for anyone that Kugler sends to them by email. Kugler calls the program ASK.
“I took this from Matthew 7:7-8 where the scriptures read: Ask and you shall be given; Seek and you will find; Knock and the door will be opened,” said Kugler, a resident of Marco Island and member of Capri Christian Church.
Prayer is a vital part of living the Christian life, and it is such a privilege to be able to pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ," she said. "This is no small undertaking, and it requires time, focus and diligence. It was God, not I, who started this prayer chain."
Kugler forwards the prayer requests she receives, along with a prayer that helps the Prayer Warriors focus on the specifics in the request.
“The prayer I send is not my own, but the Lord’s words He gives to me,” she said.
Kugler explained to the warriors who had gathered at the picnic in the park that when she agreed to lead the program, she went to the scriptures to study about prayer.
“One common thread I discovered that God laid upon my heart as I was studying was that when we pray, we have the ear of the Divine," she said. “Isn’t that a jaw dropping thought that should make us all want to drop to our knees and rejoice? Prayer is the place where burdens are shifted. It requires an initiative on our part. Don’t you remember the times when you were hurting and vulnerable, and the comfort you felt when someone said to you, I will pray for you?”
Much of what is shared is personal, so she reminded the warriors that this is not a forum to gain personal information about others, but a place where warriors genuinely and wholeheartedly pray for the needs of others.
“I like to think of this visual when it comes to us warriors. This whole idea of being a Prayer Warrior is to wage war on the evils in this world, such as illness, loneliness, depression, divorce, financial hard times and many other situations that put up road blocks to our peace of mind and happiness,” Kugler said. “I know that we are not all praying at the same time when we get an ASK prayer request, but I like to think that we are all praying for the same requests, and in my mind it looks like all these prayer arrows being sent up to Jesus who is on the receiving end and saying, 'Wow, Capri Christian Church rocks!'"
The Lord showed me that prayer is a fight; that’s why we are all Prayer Warriors," she continued. “We are in a spiritual battle against the evil one when we pray; we pray to combat evil. We are interceptors and have a higher calling to active duty in the Lord’s Army. I always see the image of that famous poster of Uncle Sam pointing a finger directly at us that says 'I need you!'”
Kugler said that we tend to think of prayer as something tranquil, but she challenged her warriors to “pray like you are going to battle for the ones who have requested your prayer help.”
Kugler referenced the Bible scripture, 2 Corinthians 13:3 which she said points out that Jesus is not weak, but mighty in you. Using her son as an example, Kugler pointed out how she taught him to pray boldly and to say directly to Satan during his attacks of mild depression: “You, Satan, have no authority over me!”
Kugler was happy to report that her son seems to have a good handle on his life now, and has thanked her for such a simplistic plan to get him back in step.
One of the side effects of receiving so many down-trodden emails from people sharing their hurts and problems in such detail, Kugler said, is to begin feeling guilty about having such a good life with so few really serious issues.
“When I get a heavy prayer request full of hurt and anxiety, I can feel the hurt and I have asked myself who am I to get off so easy,” Kugler said.
She also said that she has finally learned that this is a blessing from God, for it allows her to take up the prayers of others and help them to bear their crosses.
In closing, Kugler reminded the warriors that they could not fix problems, but can support those in need with prayer: “We go to the battle with prayer for the Lord, but HE is in charge. We leave it there for Him.”
During the lunch, warriors shared stories of the impact they had observed firsthand as a result of ASK and the Prayer Warriors' prayer assistance; from the stories told, it seems that people are grateful that so many are praying for them.
Kugler gave out little memento bags containing visual reminders of prayers being sent as arrows in battle for others.
“It takes everybody working together to make this work,” Kugler said as she thanked all who were in attendance.
Since so many of the Prayer Warriors are part-time residents, the picnic will be scheduled during the winter next year to allow more to attend.
For additional information, or for help in knowing how to start a program like this for your church or neighborhood, contact Capri Christian Church online at caprichristianchurch.org/prayer-chain.
Contact Ann Hall at email@example.com