At the April 2011 Day of Prayer, Marc Bostrom shared a great story of how he connected with his ministry partners and others through the Day of Prayer. With our next Day of Prayer coming soon, I am re-posting this interview so you would have enough time to try this idea, too, if God leads you.
e4e: Marc, thanks so much for making some time this morning when you have a lot on your plate right now.
Marc: Sus, I’m glad to share what God did. Especially, if some of the staff might want to try this idea, or something like it, as an opportunity to minister to others.
e4e: I don’t remember the details, but you emailed people a few days before April 24th, asking for prayer requests.
Marc: Yes. Over that weekend, I started preparing my heart, reflecting on the goodness and majesty of God. Almost immediately, the Lord laid it on my heart to ask for prayer requests from our donor team through an email. I put together a short explanation of the Day of Prayer and included an invitation for them to send us their prayer requests.
e4e: But God didn’t want you to stop there!
Marc: That’s right. God lead me to include others, even those I had lost connections with.
I re-wrote the email for this group to re-introduce myself and let them know we would be honored to pray for them on the global day of prayer. I pulled out business cards from people I’d met briefly at ball games, the email address of my son’s scoutmaster, and others. I collected all these possible names, not knowing if the email addresses were correct or whether they would remember me. I was also sure that many of these people were not necessarily Christians.
I sent about 180 emails out on Monday morning.
e4e: What happened?
Marc: The first person to respond was the scoutmaster, even though we’d not been in touch for ten years. In fact, eight of the first ten eMails were from the second group of people who weren’t closely connected with us. We were overwhelmed with over 75 eMails in 24 hours!
e4e: What were their responses?
Marc: They all appreciated being asked for prayer requests and 99% sent requests; some were very needy requests and some were two pages long. The group I really didn’t know, or had lost touch with, appreciated that I remembered them.
e4e: Why do you think your emails were successful (besides prayer and God’s leading)?
Marc: I think it’s very key that each email was personal. I didn’t send an 180-name group email. I merged their names into the greeting and sent 180 individual emails. I also tried to write in a conversational tone.
e4e: Has anything happened with these people since then?
Marc: This definitely was a good way to build relationships and continue the conversation. If the Lord brought one of these people to my mind these past few months, I re-read their email and replied to it asking how things were going. They all appreciated that I wanted to know the outcome of the prayer request and that I was interested in them.
e4e: Thank you so much for sharing your story with us!
Marc: I’m happy to. It wasn’t perfect and we were overwhelmed with so many requests, but we were blessed to be a part of what God was doing in these people’s lives.
Bio from Marc
Roberta and I have been on staff for 20+ years. Roberta is the Office Manager for the Office of the President and I’m an Event Coordinator for Global Fund Development.
Prior to coming on staff with Cru, I built custom homes in Sarasota,Florida, for almost 19 years.