LIMA — The Shofar sounded, and residents from around Lima and the region paused Thursday to mark the annual National Day of Prayer.Songs, prayers and encouraging words were the hallmark during the Lima observance at Allen County Memorial Hall. Prayers were offered for local, state and national political leaders, the military, youth, law enforcement and for spiritual leaders.“God is calling us to be people of courage. Being courageous does not mean that we do acts of heroism. It means that day by day, step by step we triumph over our fears and our oppositions,” said Pastor Daniel Messner, of Shawnee Alliance Church. “Our courage takes us to a place that we calculate our risks, our dreams and build upon them, whether they fail or succeed because of our God.”It wasn't just in Lima where residents stopped to pray. Prayer gatherings were also held in front of the Van Wert County Courthouse and at Heritage Park in Wapakoneta.“We're serving this community. We're praying for it; we're believing,” said Theresa Lee, coordinator of the Allen County event. “We're standing and multiplying, thousands of communities over this nation. We are celebrating this God who we believe answers prayers.”The National Day of Prayer was created in 1952 and brings together people of all faiths.“Father, we thank you that we're blessed, your children, your sons and your daughters, we are blessed ones in this earth. We stand the gap, and we intercede on behalf of this nation, on behalf of our city, on behalf of this world,” said Pastor Steve Wash, of Christian Convention Center. “We pray, Father, that the blood of Jesus that was spilled for the sins, we pray that only you by your spirit would draw all men. We thank you Lord that you would use your goodness, that you would use your love, that you would use your kindness to draw men, women, boys and girls unto the saving light of Jesus Christ.”You can comment on this story at www.LimaOhio.com.