By Kelly Roberson
Prayer changes us.
That’s what the Rev. Dr. Ted Goshorn, senior pastor of Mulberry Street United Methodist Church in Macon, Ga., writes about in his new book.
Goshorn grew up in Rome, Ga. and never expected to become a pastor. Having first pursued a career in higher education, he found a calling for helping individuals grow in their faith and churches to transform their communities. As a result of that call, Goshorn joined the ministry as an ordained United Methodist elder in the South Georgia Annual Conference.
Throughout his ministry journey, Goshorn has found a common thread woven across the pages of his story: the transformative practice of prayer. With encouragement from Mrs. Martha Wright, a member of Eastman First UMC where Goshorn previously served as senior pastor, he decided to write a book about it, “Prayer Changes Us.”
“Writing the book encouraged my journey of becoming more vulnerable, which has deepened my prayer life,” said Goshorn. “The more vulnerable I can be in life, the more vulnerable I can be with God, and the greater healing I find.”
Through the chapters of his book, Goshorn takes readers on a journey of self-discovery, finding the transformative impact of regular prayer practice and teaching how to incorporate prayer into the rhythms of life. In the first part of the book, he addresses how to pray, expanding the scope to include styles of prayer like repetition and praying scripture. In part two, he focuses on the impact of prayer on the soul, exploring the ways prayer makes us better disciples and brings us deeper in relationship with God.
Bishop David Graves, episcopal leader of the South Georgia Conference, has called laity and clergy of South Georgia to an intentional and focused season of prayer for 2023. He appreciated how this book draws us to practical ways to pray in these days.
“As you turn the pages of this book, you hear from Ted’s humble heart that reminded me of how prayer has not only changed my life but formed it,” said Bishop Graves. “We live in a world filled with so much noise that distracts and divides us. Ted reminds us that relationships are everything. His reflections highlight that home is where the heart is. Through prayer, our relationship with God is not only deepened but we experience the heart of God.”
The book includes helpful resources on establishing a rhythm of prayer, including descriptions and how-to guides on types of prayer, Methodism founder John Wesley’s self-examination questions, and daily guides for praying the Psalms or all of scripture throughout the year.
Goshorn wants people to see that prayer facilitates ongoing transformation of ourselves and our relationship with God, leading us to become evermore the healing presence of Christ on earth.
“I have experienced the power of prayer in many places,” said Goshorn. “My experience in this Annual Conference has been formative for my prayer life, helping me discover the power of prayer and its transformational effect.”
The Advocate Press is the publishing arm of the South Carolina United Methodist Advocate newspaper. It launched in 2017 to produce books of interest to United Methodists on matters of faith and to amplify regional voices and those that advocate for the advancement of the kingdom of God. “Prayer Changes Us” is available at https://advocatesc.org/store/books/prayer-changes-us or on Amazon.