Hundreds of Sumter's community members spent their morning taking in inspiration during the 2016 Mayor's Prayer Breakfast at Alice Drive Baptist Church on Thursday morning.
Community members prayed for education, families, churches, government, military, business and industry and media in Sumter.
Attendees also listened to performances by Lakewood High School Choir and Sumter Civic Chorale.
Keynote speaker Germaine Copeland, author of the "Prayers that Avail Much" book series and president and founder of Word Ministries Inc., an international prayer network, talked with the audience about how the gospel is a guiding and teaching tool.
"As citizens, we can choose not just to be religious but to live the more abundant life," Copeland said.
Worship in spirit and truth, she said.
Copeland said she attended churches of different denominations and that helped her grow as a Christian.
People of the church should lay aside their differences, prejudices and pride as they worship, she said.
"We all serve one god," Copeland said.
It's time for the church to walk in love, she said.
Copeland said when her prayers are not answered she asks herself if she is truly walking in the love of God or hindering her own blessings.
One day while thanking God for mankind, Copeland began to see the faces of individuals she had not specifically thought to include.
She said the church must also be thankful for individuals who differ from them and individuals they may not hold in high favor.
It's so easy to say you are thankful for everyone, she said.
Copeland said she was happy to learn that lesson.
She said obeying the word of God changed an attitude she did not know she had.
"Aren't you thankful for the Holy Spirit who helps us?" she asked.
The light of God's word will expose the things that are contrary to the gospel, Copeland said.
People are looking for answers and they can only be found in the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ, she said.
Story by ADRIENNE SARVIS of The Sumter Item.