Local News

August 26, 2013

Drive-through church offers prayer to go

Anne Keith was driving home from a homecoming service at her own church when she felt God leading her to turn into the parking lot of Cedar Valley Cathedral of Praise on Cleveland Highway.

The church was hosting a drive-through prayer ministry.

“God said, ‘Go to this church and let them pray for you,’” Keith said.

That was six weeks ago, and she hasn’t missed a week yet.

“It’s something I look forward to every week. I start on Wednesday thinking, ‘It’s three more days,’ then ‘two more days,’” Keith said. “I don’t have to go up there, but I choose to because I want to. It encourages me and uplifts me, helps to strengthen me. It reinforces my hope for life in general.”

Keith is one of many people who receive a blessing at the church, which hosts a drive-through prayer mission each Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m.

Members of the church stand along Cleveland Highway at Beaverdale Road holding signs and waving to let people passing by know they are welcome to come to the church for prayer — without having to get out of their cars.

“We’ve stepped outside the box,” Susan Goss said. “We’re bringing (God and prayer) to the people. ... We don’t want to be recognized. It’s not about us. It’s all about God.”

Church members are warm and welcoming, and they continually praise God as they gather under the awning of their church waiting for a driver. They are mindful to keep the focus on God and those who need prayer.

“It doesn’t matter what denomination you are,” Barry Suggs said. “Come as you are. There is no pressure. It’s about what they need. We don’t turn away anybody for anything.”

Keith had been struggling with some of her family members, who were not Christians.

“I was asking for prayer for salvation for my son,” she said. “I didn’t know them and they didn’t know me. They’ve got a heart for people and a burden and concern for the community. ... You can’t ever get too much prayer for anything.”

Two weeks later, Keith’s son began to follow God.

Several churches across the nation offer a drive-through prayer ministry for their communities.

A speaker at the church gave members the idea for the ministry and they began the drive-through service on May 26 of this year.

“God’s brought a good number of people every Sunday,” Suggs said. “Seventeen have prayed prayers for salvation. And we’ve seen other miracles. We have seen changes no human could do.

“We believe in all of the Bible,” he said. “We’re believers in  healing and miracles. God showed us what to do. The Lord has always worked miracles.”

In addition to praying for people, members of the church give visitors a prayer cloth. The cloth is based on Acts 19:11-12, which says “God did extraordinary miracles through Paul, so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.”

Touching the cloth serves as a reminder that God has touched the person holding it. The cloth is red to symbolize Jesus’ blood which was shed to make salvation available to everyone.

“They gave me a prayer cloth,” said Keith, who attends Concord Baptist Church. “My church doesn’t do that. It reminds me every day of my life that I have faith that God can do anything. There’s nothing God cannot do. It reminds me of hope and strength. I carry two with me. I won’t get dressed without them.”

God calls people to take on different tasks to spread his word and love, Keith said.

“They have a calling,” she said. “I think it’s a very sweet, caring, loving ministry. I think that’s a blessing in this world.”

Church members hope to expand their ministry to Saturdays as well. They said if God calls them to be out there seven days a week, they will be.

“We want God’s will to be done,” Goss said. “He’s coming back, and we want our whole community to be saved.”

Text Only
Local News
  • runner thompson.jpg Taking the race back

    Dean Thompson didn’t go 100 yards in his 26.2 miles through the streets of Boston without seeing people on the side of the road cheering for him.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bobby Lee Dixon mg.jpg Officials: Man jailed for driving toward officer

    A Chatsworth man who officials said accelerated a vehicle toward a law enforcement officer who was approaching on foot remains in the Murray County jail without bond.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Standoff 1 mlh.jpg Charges undetermined following standoff (Updated 5:45 p.m.)

    Police have yet to decide whether to press criminal charges against a man they say was armed and intoxicated while barricading himself in his office at a carpet mill in downtown Dalton Tuesday evening.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Man charged for using fraudulent Social Security card

    A man is being held in the Whitfield County Jail on multiple charges for using a fraudulent Social Security card with someone else’s Social Security number to land a job at a rug manufacturer in Dalton and for providing false information to receive workers’ compensation benefits, according to the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation’s Enforcement Division.

    April 23, 2014

  • Standoff 1 mlh.jpg Police: Four-hour standoff ends with peaceful surrender

    A man who was armed with at least one firearm and believed to be under the influence of alcohol surrendered to police Tuesday night after barricading himself for four hours inside a carpet mill in downtown Dalton, officials said.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Murray deputy bit by drug dog while taking selfie

    A Murray County Sheriff’s Office deputy is recovering after one of the department’s drug dogs bit him in the face on Monday.

    April 23, 2014

  • Local wrestler ‘made everybody smile’

    Rash Renegade got his wrestling nickname after a motorcycle wreck several years ago left him with a bad case of road burn.

    April 23, 2014

  • Pinwheels in murray '14 1 mlh.jpg Awareness can prevent child abuse

    Three hundred forty-six pinwheels dotted the Murray County Courthouse lawn on Tuesday, representing 346 reported cases of child abuse in the county last year.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Murray library, regional system still far apart

    Murray County officials say they will announce soon if they will follow through with their plan to take the Chatsworth-Murray Library out of the Northwest Georgia Regional Library System.

    April 22, 2014

  • Fire believed to have started outside home

    Investigators are still working to learn what sparked a fire that nearly destroyed a house at 602 Top St. in Dalton on Monday.

    April 22, 2014

AP Video