BLOWING ROCK, N.C. — It’s a place to leave your burdens, to find hope, even love, and to pour your heart into something that’s bigger than you.
In Blowing Rock, there’s a shop that’s currently closed due to a fire. But it’s what’s outside of the store that’s captured the hearts of neighbors, visitors, and even the world.
That’s a prayer tree. Walking by the store, you can’t help but notice the thousands of prayers hanging from a tree rooted beside the shop that’s become a holy and special place for those leaving behind their prayers, wishes, hopes, and dreams.
Before the fire, Sherri Furman, with Take Heart Boutique said, “God told me to put wooden hearts and pens outside the store,” but she didn’t know why.
She left for vacation and returned to find all the hearts hanging from the trees and was overwhelmed.
“I started reading the prayers and just saw how vulnerable people were in their requests. Then I started praying for everyone.”
That’s when Furman said she asked God, “What do I do next?” He said, “Get more tags.”
Soon dozens of prayer tags turned into hundreds and then into thousands.
The shop got so many prayers that they turned it into a social media movement and began tracking prayers and answered ones at that.
Sometime in between, the Take Heart Boutique caught on fire. The shop was devastated. However, the fire didn’t burn one single prayer.
Furman said, “It was a miracle, God protected all those prayers. Not a single prayer burned.”
Soon after, Furman turned to scripture and posted the following outside the burned shop near the prayers.
“When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.” Isaiah 43:2
The prayer tree went from 14,000 tags before the fire to more than 23,000 after it.
While the shop is rebuilding, Furman said God is at work.
She said, “God has done very precious miracles and healing. Even cancer has been cured, couples who couldn’t have children are now pregnant. People have even gotten married at the tree.”
Furman said, there’s a reason for the response and praises of healing, ”God told me that, ‘If they dare to write a prayer, I’ll answer.’’’
Furman said the tree has become, “A point of unity. We’re not all that different.”
The response has even started not just a nationwide but worldwide movement with prayer trees in places in California and Argentina just to name a few.
Furman said she does look forward to when they will open their shop and they are in the process of rebuilding. But until then, she’ll just wait on God to answer a few more prayers left at the tree.
You can keep up with the Prayer Tree movement.
Facebook: Take Heart Tree BR
Shop Blog: sentfromtheheart.com
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