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CALL TO PRAYER: A place of grace for prayer

PHOENIX (BP) — My daughter has been serving God overseas for many years. When we see her after a long absence, it’s usually at an airport. When we say goodbye after a short visit, it’s usually at an airport.

We’ve started an airport tradition. We call it the Great Commission Prayer Corner. It began one day at the Nashville airport on a brown bench just outside security. There were pictures on the wall of coffee from Africa and Central America. It was a quiet corner in the midst of a sea of travelers.

A long flight awaited her followed by a quick plunge into the deep, turbulent waters of a distant world, and we had much to pray about. After we prayed together we watched as she went through security and headed to her gate.

Now, whenever I’m at the Nashville airport, I head for our “Great Commission Prayer Corner.” There are no signs or directions, but it doesn’t matter because I know the place by heart. These memorable places can only be found by heart.

The pictures from Africa and Central America are still there, and my two or three minutes of prayer on that brown bench for my daughter are rich. It is a special place.

At the Phoenix airport our Great Commission Prayer Corner is a nondescript round metal table under a WWI fighter hanging from the ceiling. Prayer has made that unremarkable place a special place as well.

Any old place can be transformed by His grace. It’s not that the place itself is so special, as if it were a shrine where we lay flowers and light candles. It is the God we meet there that is special. It is He we venerate — not a space or place.

The Israelites gave these God-meeting places names. Jacob, for example, baptized his ordinary place transformed by God’s grace “Bethel,” which means house of God (Genesis 28:10-21).

Where is your memorable God Meeting Place? Is it the lawn in front of the kindergarten where you knelt and prayed for your little girl on her first day of school? Maybe it’s that kitchen table where you led your son in prayer to receive Jesus Christ.

Now, when you drive by that school or sit at that table, you cannot help but reach out in prayer for your child again.

Any old place can be a special place if we meet God there. And the truly remarkable thing is that God is in every place at all times. The place where you are. Right now. God is there. Right now. Why not take a moment and visit with Him. Invite those you’re with to join you. You just might discover a new favorite place, transformed by His grace. Thank you, Lord, for making any old place a place of grace.

    About the Author

  • Ralph Tone