As we approach the holiday season, we are all aware of moving from long days of sunshine to shorter days of more darkness. On the spiritual journey, there are times of darkness and times of light. Sometimes the darkness is designed to take us into more awareness and more of God’s love. During certain passages the darkness comes for reasons we simply cannot understand. In addition to times of challenge, at other times the journey is easy. On those days we are simply able to walk accompanied by Divine love, celebrating the joy of a season of blessing. The movement between easy times and challenging times is familiar to each of us on the spiritual path.
Here at the Arkansas House of Prayer, we are a sanctuary for both times of gratitude and joy as well as times of sorrow and trouble. This spring a young couple was participating in premarital counseling. As part of that preparation, they went into the House of Prayer to pray for one another. During the silence the mystical presence of the Divine made God’s special love known during that time of prayer. In what might have been a perfunctory practice of a new prayer skill, the couple was surprised by a joyful experience of the Divine that transcended expectation. So for these young lovers, the House of Prayer was a place of a special and unexpected awareness of God’s presence in a season of light and joy.
Another visitor during this past year came to the House of Prayer during a dark time. She writes:
For the past decade I slowly and excruciatingly watched my beloved and brilliant mother succumb to Alzheimer’s disease. When events escalated last December and I seemed to be falling apart, a dear friend introduced me to the Arkansas House of Prayer and meditation. Meditation enabled me to navigate my way through the single greatest fear and loss of my life- the death of my mom. I can honestly say that it saved me. Through daily meditation I was able to breathe, center myself, and quiet my racing mind. I was able to step outside of my comfort zone and not become paralyzed by fear. Meditation enabled me to navigate my way through. It has now become such a fundamental and treasured part of my daily existence. The Arkansas House of Prayer’s mission resonates deeply within me.
These stories capture the breadth of our mission: to be there for people during times of joy as well as to be there for people during times of challenge.
We have now completed 10 years of operation. We have welcomed over 15,000 visitors to our space. We have an endowment that is growing. We have been gifted with a new outdoor prayer path for walking meditation that is under construction. We are teaching children of all faiths how to meditate. We have our arms open wide to share Divine love in this sacred space for silence.
Each year people like you give end-of-the-year gifts that are truly the core of our budget. We have no primary financial support from any institution. Each year we literally find ways to keep our doors open to those who walk down the path to our building. We are grateful for every gift and we need every gift. Without generous donors like you this unique ministry would not happen.
In addition to what we will receive from our endowment , we need to raise $45,000 to operate this ministry next year. We are praying for these gifts
1 gift of $10,000
4 gifts of $5,000
3 gifts of $2,500
4 gifts of $1,000
5 gifts of $500
5 gifts of $100
10 gifts of $50
Thank you for considering what you can do to help us keep this space open for sacred silence in 2018.
Blessings to you during this holiday season.
The Rev. Susan Sims Smith, Founder and Life Member
Dr. Christie Beck, MD
President of Arkansas House of Prayer Board of Directors
Print out the reply card below and mail to the address printed on it, or to give online, simply click the PayPal link to your right! Thank you for including Arkansas House of Prayer in your giving this year.