Continuing to lift up the community in prayer, Bartow’s National Day of Prayer service was presented solely on radio and social media Thursday. While this year’s pretaped celebration was drastically smaller and quieter than past offerings, its overall message remained intact.
“Good day and welcome to the Bartow County-Northwest Georgia National Day of Prayer,” said the Rev. David Franklin, National Day of Prayer’s Georgia state director. “But it’s not just here. It’s all over the United States and ultimately the world. Last year, over 45,000 gatherings, like this, happened across the nation and around the world. So we want to say welcome and thank you for your heart for prayer.
‘Many people have asked me, ‘David, are we really going to do the National Day of Prayer?’ The answer is absolutely. Even in the midst of COVID-19, it’s even more important to be now praying.”
Franklin also touched on the meaning behind this year’s theme, “Praying God’s Glory Across the Earth,” which derives from Habakkuk 2:14.
“It says, ‘For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of God as the waters cover the sea,’” he said, referring to the highlighted Bible verse. “That’s what we’re praying for here today, that the glory of God would cover Bartow County, every individual, every home, every church, community leaders — our whole community — and not just here, across the nation and around the world.”
Created by a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress in 1952, the National Day of Prayer was signed into law by President Harry S. Truman and is recognized annually on the first Thursday of May.
Along with Franklin’s opening prayer, the service featured a proclamation reading by Bartow County Commissioner Steve Taylor and music from Pastor Devin Adams, minister of worship for The Church at Liberty Square. The celebration also included prayers from the Rev. Tina Spellman, senior pastor for the Living Way Church in Adairsville; the Rev. Randy Livsey, senior pastor for Greater Mt. Olive Baptist Church in Cartersville; the Rev. Keith Wood, senior pastor for First Assembly of God in Cartersville; and Dr. Jacob T. King, Bartow’s National Day of Prayer Steering Committee chairman and senior pastor for The Church at Liberty Square.
“I think about a very particular moment in Jesus’ ministry, where He went to the pool of Bethesda,” King said during the service. “He saw and was almost overwhelmed by human need. But being overwhelmed by human need, He fixed his gaze on one man and asked him one question. He said, ‘Do you want to get well?
“I don’t know about you, but I want to see this nation get well. … We want our people well. Not just physically, not just the sicknesses of coronavirus and the disease that plagues the world right now in this pandemic, but the sickness that’s caused by the disease of the soul.”
In his message, King prayed specifically for those experiencing sickness, job issues, family problems and mental health challenges.
“Much like the man there that was paralyzed by the pool in John’s Gospel that heard the question of Jesus, ‘Do you want to get well?’” King said. “In the midst of chaos, Lord Jesus, you made sure that he was healed. Lord, I’m praying today that you would in the midst of this present chaos, that while the waters are troubled and the very culture and atmosphere of the land is troubled and while there are so many multitudes with so many needs today, I am praying that you would reach down your strong arm one more time.
“I am praying, Father, that you would meet the needs of the people and you would touch those that are sick and those in need of a miracle from God. But more than that, I pray that you would draw us closer to you.”
Bartow’s National Day of Prayer service still can be viewed on www.facebook.com/prayforbartow.