When I was on pregnancy bed rest with triplets, I was blessed by people sending me notes and cards that I hung on the wall of my hospital room for encouragement. So when I sit in church every week and hear about people struggling with health, missionaries facing challenges, and friends needing prayer, and I think, “I should send them a note,” or I think of those to whom I’d like to send a thank-you card. But do I actually do it? No. Why? Because once I exit through the church doors, life hits me in the face, and I rarely remember the notes the Holy Spirit pricks me to send.
Guessing I was not alone, I started a card ministry. In the church narthex I set up a table with note paper, cards, envelopes, and stamps. I found a local store to donate old cards of all kinds. As time went on, congregants also started donating cards. Now, when the Holy Spirit prompts someone to write a note in church or during Bible study, there is a place to do that before they forget. I named the ministry Paper Prayers because it is my hope that when people write a note to someone they will also take time to pray for that person.
The apostle Paul knew the value of written notes of encouragement and wrote many “notes” to his fellow Christians. He wrote, “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing” (1 Thess. 5:11).
God can speak to others through prayerfully written notes. God always knows what people need and when. From a close friend I’ve heard, “Your card came at the exact time that I needed it.” A friend whose father died told me, “I got a note with the perfect verse written in it right when I needed those words.” From a wife whose husband was fighting cancer: “Look at all these cards we received from our church, family, and friends!” In a world that moves increasingly fast, slowing down to write a note shows an amount of care and concern beyond a flippant “I’ll be praying for you” in passing or on social media.
Who in your life needs a note and a prayer? A co-worker, a classmate, a relative, a missionary, or a cashier at your grocery store? Life is difficult—be a blessing! So many people need encouraging words, need to know someone cares, need your prayers. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Your note can simply be a verse God put in your mind. Write a note, say a prayer, and let God minister to someone’s heart through you today.