MOUNT VERNON — With the focus on 1 Timothy 2:1-3, thoughts and prayers went out for all of the state and local elected officials, the president, the country and the United States Military at the 12th annual Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast on Saturday.
“The main purpose is to pray for the leaders of this community and for the people of Mount Vernon and Knox County,” said organizer Paul Dove. “It’s open to everyone and is something we do every year, so we are going to keep going for as long as the Lord allows us to do it.”
1 Timothy 2:1-3 reads, “First of all then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgiving, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity ...”
Mount Vernon City Mayor Richard Mavis welcomed those present, and acknowledged the elected officials and candidates who were present.
“Pray that peace may be upon them so that peace maybe upon us,” prayed Pastor Dewey Morrow, retired, Four Square Gospel Church.
Featured speaker Tom Ryan, head coach for Ohio State University wrestling team, shared his personal experience in coming to know God and how faith is the key for all undertakings.
“We are not humans on a spiritual journey, but spiritual beings on a human journey,” Ryan quoted.
“God patiently waits for us to love him,” he said.
Ryan said there were many people along the way who touched his life and “planted seeds” about the love of Jesus Christ prior to him becoming a Christian. A friend, a barber and a pastor he met while traveling all witnessed to him of God’s love. He said that through the loss of his son, he learned by reading the book of Genesis that God created all of life, and was uplifted by the knowledge. He was also encouraged in his faith to believe.
“Sometimes life doesn’t make sense to our human intellect,” he said.
He said that as he sought to find answers to the trials in his life, it was God’s love that found and changed him.
“Love always wins,” he said.
He encouraged everyone to welcome challenges, and spoke of James 1:2-3: “Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.” He said he discovered through his life trials that inner peace can be found, regardless of the challenge.
“God is counting on each of us to live up to our godly potential,” said Ryan.
Local physician Dr. Brent Nimeth also spoke.
“We think we know our mission in life, then the world creeps in and we start doing more and more,” he said.
He said that after he found his life consumed by being busy, he asked God, “What is your plan?” He learned through prayer that it was not about his work but God’s work, and set priorities in his life. Nimeth said staying focused on the Christian task is the purpose in life, and that he hopes others will continue to do the same.
One person at each table took home a praying hands centerpiece, which folded open to be a Bible holder as well.
“They were divinely inspired so that you will always be reminded to pray,” said volunteer John Francis.
Also leading in prayers were the Rev. Mark Hammond of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church and Pastor Larry Hall of Lakeholm Church of the Nazarene. The Mount Vernon Fire Department Color Guard presented the flags and the pledge of allegiance was led by John Francis. Harvest Christian Center provided special music.