Pray for Missions

Prayer is vital to all we do in WMU. We can’t all go, but we can all pray.

Hold a special prayertime focusing on those serving globally and in the United States. Pray also for those without a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Pray for opportunities to share the gospel.

Recently I had the privilege of meeting a missionary family who served in Brazil for many years through the International Mission Board (IMB) and learning the story of their miracle daughter, Priscila: 

In 1996, we were pregnant with baby number 4. We were just out of language school and living in Niterói, a city of around 500,000. We had planned on having this baby like the previous 3 and doing natural childbirth. We had finally found a doctor who would agree to not do a C-section and had just begun practicing our Lamaze breathing methods. However, God had other plans. Our youngest daughter, Priscila, was not going to come into this world on time but would instead arrive 2 months premature.

Priscila was born exactly 2 weeks before her father Jeff’s birthday, weighing just less than 4 pounds (1,860 grams). She was placed in the best neonatal unit in Niterói, a place that we later learned was primitive by US standards. She was not thriving and would gain about the equivalent of a handful of paper clips (10 grams) in weight and then lose twice that much the next day. She had lost almost a quarter of her birth weight and we were watching our precious daughter die before our eyes.

We knew that many missionaries used to wait until their birthdays to do the hard things in their ministries, because they knew that many Southern Baptists would be reading their prayer calendar and would be lifting the missionaries up by name in prayer before the heavenly Father. On Jeff’s birthday, we desperately prayed for God to bless our daughter with 10 grams of weight. We thought that we were asking “big” of our God.

On the day after Jeff’s birthday, we arrived at the neonatal unit expecting to hear that our prayers and the prayers of many faithful Southern Baptists had been answered. Many may have prayed simply, “God, please be with Jeff and his family in Brazil.” They did not know that we had a daughter dying in a neonatal unit, but God knew! God graciously heard your prayers. That day, our daughter did not gain the 10 grams of weight that we had asked for—she gained 40 grams of weight and from that day forward, she began to thrive. We brought her home after 37 days in the NICU. The bill for her hospitalization totaled $42,000, but it was already paid in full because Southern Baptists had given to the IMB.

Because you prayed and because you gave, today, we have a beautiful 19-year-old young woman who is starting her second year of college and wants to be a secondary math teacher. She is smart, she is talented, she is our joy. Our lives are richer because God listened to your prayers and did as Paul wrote in Ephesians 3:20: “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us.” God is good, all the time!

Kristy Carr serves as ministry consultant for churchwide and associational leadership, national WMU. 

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