Sunday, March 1, 2009

Carmen & Kelly's Story

Carmen Franklin and Kelly Johnson often laugh about how God placed two very different people in the right place at the right time, but they're so thankful that He did.

In God's perfect timing, a white girl from the north and a black girl from the south not only became prayer partners but also developed a kindred friendship which has inspired them to encourage others to pray together for the needs of Memphis just Two by Two.

So where did it all begin?

In May of 2008, Kelly was passing through the hallway at Carmen's office. Carmen recalls, "I really felt a pull and a connection the day we ran into one another. I shared prayer requests with Kelly which I'd never voiced to anyone else."

After that simple encounter, Kelly and Carmen decided to begin praying together, specifically for the needs of Memphis (a city they both love). Kelly was still living in Maryland and Carmen living in Tennessee. From two different states, they began to pray together weekly for Jesus to come to Memphis and renew the city. Once a month they had the joy of getting together to pray in person and those became times they would especially treasure.

Over the next few months, something exciting began to happen with Carmen and Kelly. More and more they began to look forward to praying together and as they prayed for Memphis their friendship grew stronger. Kelly realized, "There's just something about prayer that breaks down any barriers or preconceived ideas you might have. Prayer reveals a person's heart and it's a beautiful place to really get to know someone."

Carmen and Kelly were learning things from each other about the racial barriers that have divided this city for so long and with black hand clutched in white hand they agreed "in Jesus' name" that it was finally time for Memphis to come together as ONE.

Knowing that only Jesus and only prayer could truly renew and unify Memphis, they thought nothing would be better than encouraging others to form prayer partnerships just as they had. Not only praying across racial barriers, but also praying period, Carmen and Kelly know that whenever two or more ask... Jesus will come to town and transform their city!

Fully believing He'll do it, Carmen says, "Thank you Lord... Thank you Loooord!" and Kelly says, "Jesus show up and show off in Memphis!"

Together they challenge you, "Reach out. Find a Two by Two partner and become part of a prayer movement which will invite Jesus to Memphis, transform our city and surely make history!

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