Sunday, September 25, 2016

The Untapped Power Grid Project: Reconnecting the Body of Christ

The body of Christ has become disconnected from its most powerful part, and we don't even realize it. Two organizations hope to help open our eyes to our need and reconnect us in creative, innovative ways.

Jeff Flinn has been in pastoral ministry most of  his adult life. He currently serves as Vice President of Life Connections for a group of nursing homes. When residents who are frail of body but sound in mind and spirit enter the nursing home, many of their life connections are disrupted. They leave behind family, friends, occupation, home, and church. It can be a shattering event.

Three years ago, Jeff founded the 719 Project. It's based on Psalm 71:9, in which King David wrote, "Do not cast me away when I am old and do not forsake me when my strength is gone." If King David feared being forsaken in his old age, we may, too. 

The 719 Project vision is to end isolation and loneliness among the elderly and infirmed in our communities. The three pillars of the project are respect, remember, and reconnect. They host Sit With Me Sunday, service projects for youth, and an annual 719 rally that connects people of all ages. 

When the Untapped Power Grid project was birthed, my first thought was of Jeff Flinn and the 719 Project. It's a perfect pairing. 

As a physician, I rounded in numerous nursing facilities to do wound care. Many of those people were weak in body but not in mind. They were lonely and eager to reconnect and give back. I realized that the wisest people in the body of Christ, the most powerful prayer warriors, had become disconnected from the rest of us because of the weakness of their bodies. They were a kind of "untapped power grid" of prayer.

It's clear to me that we desperately need the wisdom and sound judgment of our elders.

UPG (Untapped Power Grid) seeks to reconnect the body of Christ with our elders in a way that allows the elders to give back in substantive and world-changing ways.

I've recruited missionaries and leaders in the body of Christ from a variety of organizations. They've given me a few specific needs for which they've like prayer and agreed to give me an update once a month. UPG pairs those missionaries with elders who are willing to pray big prayers for them once or twice a day. Every day. Without fail.

When UPG and 719 partnered to accomplish an enormous task, a beautiful thing happened. There's no competition for the top position, no "my".

"We", the body of Christ, are working together, and it's a beautiful thing.

The joint project is only a month old, but it's already making a difference. Seniors from Mississippi to Maine have agreed to pray. Missionaries around the world are receiving the benefits of those prayers. God is doing exceeding, abundantly above all that those elders ask for their missionaries.

It's an amazing pairing of two visions that make a lovely whole. 

When Jesus walked this earth, He had one group of followers. One group of disciples. One church. After He returned to heaven, He left behind one Church, the body of Christ. Even though they lived in many places, it is clear from Scripture that they knew they were all part of the same Body of Christ.

It's past time for Christ's followers to reunite in that same way. This beautiful pairing has convinced those of us in 719 Project and the Untapped Power Grid Project that we're stronger together than we are apart. We can make a bigger difference for the Kingdom of God together than we can separately.

We're equal-opportunity servants. Equal opportunity prayer-recruiters. 

If you are (or know) a senior adult who would be willing to pray, we have missionaries who need prayer coverage.

If your church supports missionaries, we'd like to recruit them to let us pray for them. It doesn't matter which man-made organization they're under, as long as they work under the authority and in the service of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

There's no fee or cost to join UPG. Missionaries, prayer warriors, and facilitators are all welcome. 

We can't do it alone. We need people who can help connect us with elders and with missionaries. We need facilitators who will be the hands of feet of this project. 

We need YOU.

Want to know more? I can help with that. 

I'm glad to speak to groups of any size about this project. My presentation on praying for your Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the earth might just change your own prayer life. You might help change the world. Message me, email, reply to this post, or call to arrange a time for me to speak.

When the body of Christ functions as Jesus intended, incredible things happen. More than 2000 years ago, a handful of men and women turned the world right-side up by their fervor and their unity. We can do it again. If we will. 

So, body of Christ, let's link hands and help bring the Good News of Jesus to a lost and perishing world.

"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations..." Matthew 28:19

The woman in the picture, above, is my Grandmother. Vera Benson Thaxton. She loved everyone, and she was a missionary from her home. Her prayers, and the money she saved and gave to missions, reached around the world. Without her influence, I wouldn't be a missionary today.

In case you missed the story of Sam's project, here's the link: Sam's Project: Rubber Boots for Barefoot Rwandan Children
If you'd like to give to help buy boots for the barefoot school children of Rwandan, you can go directly to the project page here: Help Sam's Kids
In case you missed it, here's the link to yesterday's post: The Dirty Laundry in the Background
Nothing operates without funding, and the Untapped Power Grid is no exception. You can help support this project financially, as well. Here's the link: Leanna Hollis/Global