By Joan Clayton: PNT Religion Columnist
National Day of Prayer is on the first Thursday in May (May 4). It reflects the nation’s deep hunger for spiritual renewal.
Throughout history, Americans of faith have sought the Lord’s help in meeting life’s challenges and adversities. This day is for Americans to seek God for deliverance and protection as a corporate body. Please pray for our leaders.
We are admonished to pray in 1 Timothy 2:1-4 … “for all men, for kings and for all that are in authority. That we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”
Let us pray for righteousness in our nation. A culture decline, a sea of immorality, dishonesty, corruption and threats from terrorists slowly but surely rob democracy and freedom.
Despite the many problems and challenges, those who pray have a steadfast hope and trust in God’s faithfulness. When God is approached in true repentance and humility, seeking forgiveness for our nation and ourselves, God responds.
Believing prayer makes a difference. Pray while you go through your day, driving the car, working in the yard, shopping or walking. Use any time available to pray.
Prayer has changed history, averted disasters and has enabled ordinary people to do extraordinary things. Prayer changes attitudes. God hears every prayer and it is the secret to a relationship of being close to him.
Prayer relieves tension and focuses attention on God. Prayer is communication with God and our sincerity and openness are valuable to him.
We are to “pray without ceasing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).) We are to follow Jesus’ example. (Luke 5:16) We pray to receive power over evil. (Mark 9:20) Only God has the solution for our country’s ills.
Prayer overcomes. People who pray hold this nation together. The mountain-moving faith of prayer warriors accomplishes much. “When a believing person prays, great things happen” (James 5:16 NCV). Prayer warriors build a hedge and stand in the gap.
I like to think that when we pray for others a wall of love surrounds them. Those walls are made with sincere care and concern. Those “prayer walls” keep positive affirmations coming. Those prayers give a support system that enhances healing. In times of crisis we realize how desperately we need prayers for our nation and for each other. Praying for others requires sacrifice. It is motivated by love and is one of the highest pinnacles of unselfishness.
The prayer of agreement moves mountains according to Matthew 18:19: “I also tell you this … if two of you agree down here on earth concerning anything you ask for, my Father in heaven will do it for you” (TLB).
We “wrestle not with flesh and blood.” We fight an unseen enemy whose mission is “to steal, kill and destroy. God’s purpose is to give life in all its fullness: (John 10:10).
Our biggest threat in America today is within our own borders. Our gracious God, who has guided and directed this nation since its beginning has been ignored, blasphemed, forgotten and neglected. Once again 2 Chronicles 7:14 echoes in my ears: “If my people who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
Prayer changes attitudes. God hears every prayer and it is the secret to a relationship of being close to him. Prayer makes a difference. Let us humbly fall to our knees, seeking God with honor, truth and respect.
If we have no prayers to offer, God cannot answer and how can God withhold judgment if we do not intercede for our country?
We can light this nation. Prayer can change America. We serve a mighty God. He hears the cry of his people.
Let your light shine with flames of faith.
Joan Clayton is a retired teacher and religion columnist living in Portales.