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The London Institute for Contemporary Christianity

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Coco Pops and the power of prayer: George’s story

Relationships were strained.

The business had been operating smoothly until a change at the top. New people changing things unsettled those who enjoyed the comfort of a familiar workplace, whilst others welcomed the new ideas. Over time, things settled down. The former leaders were still around, which gave comfort, but weren’t disruptively active, which gave the new leaders freedom.

But then a crisis hit. And people started falling out. New leaders with old leaders, long-serving staff with new staff. Everyone with everything.

Months into the crisis, it was getting harder and harder. It felt like a collision was coming.  But George*, a long-serving employee who was part of the new leadership group and a Christian, realised he hadn’t prayed. Well – he had prayed for himself, and his circumstances. But he hadn’t prayed for others.

So he decided to do just that. And as George prayed over the course of a Saturday, his prayers took an unexpected direction.

They became less about fixing things, and more about understanding the pressures each person faced. They were prayers for people to come to faith – not as a solution to ‘make it all better’, but because that was God’s call.  They were prayers for wisdom and grace if people did come to Christ, recognising that following Jesus doesn’t make problems disappear. And they were prayers prayed in recognition that George himself might need to change just as much as those he was praying for.

And then early on Monday morning, an email arrived. From someone who had been difficult.

It was as though it had been written by a completely different person. Affirming, uplifting, constructive. At least, that was how George was able to take it. Something had changed; perhaps they both had. Perhaps the email’s author had had a good night’s sleep, or a particularly excellent bowl of Coco Pops that day.

But as the week went on, it lasted. Email after email was written in the same positive tone. Phone calls were easy, enjoyable. The effects of a good bowl of cereal do not last that long. George was convinced God had been at work.

The crisis was not over. Difficult decisions were still needed. But God was there. The ineffably sublime potentate of time was bothered about this little business, the stresses and strains of the employees, the pressures of the leaders. He heard George’s prayers and showed he was there.

And George?  Well, he’s realised that if God answered this prayer, he would answer others. And that if he takes the time to ask God how he should pray, George will see him working in ways beyond his wildest imagination.



*Name changed

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Each of us will have moments or stories like these, but we easily forget or don’t see them. Yet they can be such a source of encouragement to us, and to others.

Why not take some time to tell us your own story of God at work in your everyday? We’d love to hear it – and, with your permission, share it to help others see how God might be working through them!

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