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Dynamite Prayer Initiative brings an uplifting spirit

By: Doreen Gosmire, director of communications, Dakotas UMC

The Dakotas-Minnesota Episcopal Area Dynamite Prayer Initiative engaged United Methodists across the Dakotas from January 14 through February 10, 2024. Several congregations joined in the 28-day prayer journey. 

Dynamite Prayer Resurrection Power

Dynamite Prayer, by Revs. Sue Nilson Kibbey and Rosario Picardo, is a 28-day experience. It is a daily prayer guide that guides you to begin a practice of “breakthrough prayer,” a way of praying where we ask God to open new doors and reveal new possibilities fueled by the Holy Spirit's power. It is an adventure to take you from feeling stuck, overwhelmed, and uninspired to curious and expectant as you surrender your own experiences and ideas and courageously follow the miracles God brings into your life.

Here are three examples of how churches infused prayer into the life of their congregation over these 28 days.

Evergreen UMC

At Evergreen United Methodist Church in Wahpeton, North Dakota, Rev. Kori Lehrkamp distributed books and encouraged people to pray at 11:20.

“This was strategic as we begin an 11:20 Breakthrough prayer challenge through Lent. We also uploaded the conference prayer videos to our Facebook page at 11:20 for the day as a reminder and encouragement to continue to pray,” said Pastor Kori.

One week, Pastor Kori, in addition to the conference prayer video, took a deeper dive into Dynamite prayer by doing an extended devotional and message. Lehrkamp reports that people watched the daily videos and engaged each day. “I hope it prompted people to be more intentional in their daily faith practices,” she said. “I think it was a good reminder that we all have the Dynamos power of God in us. Each of us was created with a passion and a purpose to be highly effective, exactly where we are at. I keep telling them, ‘God is on the Move. Are we moving, too?’”

Dunamis is the original Greek word in the New Testament for the resurrection power of God's Spirit. Our English word ‘dynamite’ gains its origin from this Greek word. When we pray, it's an opportunity to ask God's Spirit to break through and transform our lives and world.

Knollwood Heights UMC

At Knollwood Heights United Methodist Church in Rapid City, South Dakota, 20 congregants personally engaged in the Dynamite Prayer book study. Rev. Sharla McCaskell distributed books and shared the daily prayers on the congregation's Facebook page

One of the participants shared, “Starting every day with Breakthrough Prayer has become very powerful in my personal walk with God.”

Another person said, “I enjoyed it. I thought the daily segment and the 28-day stretch length were good. It easily fits into my morning routine. The best part was it made me think before responding each day. Although thought-provoking, it was not ‘preachy.’”

The Dynamite Prayer 28-day journey is not your typical small group Bible Study. It can be shared in a group format or completed as an individual. “While there wasn't an organized group study, I was pleased with the participation,” said Pastor Sharla.

Madison UMC

Dynamite Prayer Problem Focused

At the United Methodist Church in Madison, South Dakota, Rev. Peggy Hanson invited the church council and capital campaign teams to participate. An invitation was also extended to any church member. About 20 people took the books.

“I also created a sermon series based on the book and preached on it for the four weeks beginning February 21,” explains Pastor Peggy. “We had an email thread where we could share thoughts and insights and discuss our thoughts from the reading.”

Overall, it was well-received, reports Pastor Peggy. Some key ideas people took away were: “Wait Training–” how we need to truly trust and wait for God's timing, growing in patience is growing in our faith, and "Spirit of Hope," where we're shifting away from a scarcity/negative mentality and living into the Dunamis Spirit of hope and possibility. 

Dynamite Prayer really helped to set a strong foundation for how we are feeling called and led to live out our faith as people of Madison United Methodist Church,” said Pastor Peggy.

Participating as an individual

Several people participated in Dynamite Prayer as individuals. Rev. Rebecca Trefz posted a personal prayer and a quote from the devotional each day on her Facebook page. 

She was pleasantly surprised to see how people responded– not just with likes on her Facebook page, but also with comments about how much they needed that prayer that day or even just the word ‘Amen’. 
“There were comments from friends in the Conference. There were reactions from people I know who aren't actively engaged in a church. There is something about simple, hope-filled prayer that connects with people,” said Trefz.
You can participate anytime in this 28-day prayer journey as a congregation, with a small group, or as an individual. The resources, daily videos, daily social media graphics, information about the book, and weekly reflections are available for your use— access resources here.


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