“Seeking the peace and prosperity of the city.”
This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says to all those I carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: “Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce. Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease. Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper” (Jeremiah 29:4-7).
A Montgomery County Prayer Breakfast was held in Rockville Maryland on the National Day of Prayer, May 5, 2016. Executive Director of the Institute for Faith, Work & Economics (www.tifwe.org) Hugh Whelchel provided the keynote address. Hugh is the author of How Then Should We Work?: Rediscovering the Biblical Doctrine of Work. Hugh has a Master of Arts in Religion and brings over 30 years of diverse business experience to his leadership at IFWE.
The key phrase in this short passage from the book of Jeremiah provided the theme for our event — to “seek the peace and prosperity of the city.” The word used for peace is the Hebrew word shalom, which has a far more comprehensive meaning than the English word peace. In his book, “Not the Way It’s Supposed to Be”, Cornelius Plantinga explains shalom as:
…the webbing together of God, humans, and all creation in justice, fulfillment, and delight…Shalom means universal flourishing, wholeness and delight—a rich state of affairs in which natural needs are satisfied and natural gifts fruitfully employed, a state of affairs that inspires joyful wonder as its Creator and Savior opens doors and welcomes the creatures in whom he delights. Shalom, in other words, is the way things ought to be.
As follower’s of Jesus, we are called to pray for the shalom of Rockville and Montgomery County and to help ‘reweave’ shalom into our homes, workplaces, and communities by being Christ’s ambassadors. In order to accomplish this, we must understand the creator’s original objective in creation, which was to bring glory to himself. One of the ways we do this is by joining in the work of restoring God’s creation, because by doing so we bring him glory.
Agenda and participants in the Montgomery County Prayers:
Welcome and Introduction – Kelly Leonard, Nehemiah Project
– Scripture Reading: 1 Timothy 2:1-4
– Rev. Ben Wickner, Cross Community Church
Prayer for our arts, education and media leaders:
– Nate Timm, Fellowship of Christian Athletes
Prayer for our government leaders and public servants, first responders and veterans:
– Catherine Matthews, Montgomery County Government
– Luther Reynolds, Montgomery County Police Department
Prayer for our families, church & business leaders
– Carlos Duran, Hombres de Palabra
Keynote Address: “Seeking the peace and prosperity of the city.”
– Hugh Whelchel, IFWE
– Rev. Tim Warner, Montgomery County Public Schools
Closing Remarks & Next Steps:
– Kelly Leonard
The Prayer Breakfast was held in the Social Hall at the Rockville Civic Center Park, the F. Scott Fitzgerald Theater, in the heart of Rockville, Maryland.
• Career Confidence (www.career-confidence.org/)
• Christian Business Men’s Connection (md.cbmc.com & metrodc.cbmc.com)
• Cross Community Church of Rockville (www.cross-community.org)
• Dawn Crafton Dance Connection (www.dcdcdance.com)
• Fellowship of Christian Athletes (mocomdfca.org)
• Incenta (www.incenta.net)
• Institute for Faith Work & Economics (www.tifwe.com)
• Pinnacle Forum (www.PinnacleForum.com)
• Nehemiah Project International Ministries (nehemiahproject.org)
• Santo Outreach Ministry (www.santooutreachministry.org)
• Special Olympics Montgomery County (www.somdmontgomery.org)