Prayers for a Nation

So, here we are, the morning after the elections.  No matter which way your vote was cast, one thing remains the same:  the same Jesus is still just as alive, and moving in the hearts of His people!  Sure, some things are different, but much is the same.  We knew we’d wake up this morning with a new face that would lead our country.  That much we can all agree on.  Though we didn’t know which face that would be, we knew we would wake up to a difference.  We woke up to much talk on the news shows about the politics of the evening, but did you notice what was “missing”?  The political commercials and TV ads.  May I subtly throw in my excitement at not having to watch another one for a while?  Yet again, with no ads to view this morning, another difference.  Even the roads looked different, with many of the signs that dotted the landscape yesterday removed today.  But, even with all these differences and many more, one thing still rings true:  Jesus is still at the right hand of His Father, who is still on His throne, and whose ears are still wanting to hear the voices of His people as they cry out to Him.  No matter your political position, or your thoughts on the events of last night, I think we as Christians can all agree on this:  God is still in control and still holding us tightly in the grip of His nail-scarred hand.  So, what does that mean for us?  It means that it’s time for us to remember the action we were called to in scripture:

“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 I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”  2 Chronicles 7:14

Sure, we’ve heard this scripture over and over again in light of the elections the past few months.  But, there is so much found in these words, that sometimes some of it seems to go unnoticed.  A few thoughts, if I may:

  • God doesn’t say “when” my people… he leads it off with “if”.  That puts the ball in our court, lets us make our choice.  We got to make our own choice when we voted, but even more importantly, we get to choose whether or not we call on His name!
  • He reminds us that we’re called BY HIS name.  That means we’re labeled Christians “little Christs”.  A subtle reminder from the Father that we’re HIS- all the time! 
  • “If they will humble themselves”- we can’t be haughty in our dealings with Jesus.  No room for that.  He was the ultimate example of humility- and He lead with His life.  His actions spoke for Him.  His words, important no less, were paralelled by His actions. 
  • “If they will seek My face”- it’s not just enough to come before the Father and pray.  We have to seek His face.  As much as we all know to look in the direction we’re walking. or look in the direction of one that’s talking to us, we also should look toward Heaven- maybe not outwardly, but at least inwardly.  Know the direction from which our help comes!  When we converse with others around us, we look them in the face- doesn’t the God of the universe deserve the same from us?
  • “And turn from their wicked ways”- again, it can’t just be words we say.  If we’re asking God to help us, we have to be willing to lay aside the sin that we all bear and let Jesus take control.
  • “Then I will hear from heaven”- to me, this is a picture of Jesus interceding to the Father on our behalf.  God has the ultimate say-so, but these 6 words give me a mental image of Jesus saying to His Father, “Listen, Dad.  They’re praying to you.  And, because of the sincerity of their prayers, I’m asking You to please hear their prayers and work in their lives- in Your own way”.  That may not be the exact, theological interpretation, but that’s the way I see it.  And, I’m comforted by the thought that Jesus would talk to His Father on my behalf.  Wow!
  • “I will…”- it starts with an “IF” on our part, but ends with a “WILL” on His part.  Nothing else to say on this one, really.  He will…  No ifs, ands, or buts about it.  Maybe not HOW we want, but HE WILL!
  • “forgive their sins and heal their land”- notice- it starts with healing our sins- individual sins- and then moves to healing our land.  So many prayers have gone up the past few days and weeks for the health and protection of our country.  I wonder how many prayers have gone up in that time for the health and protection of our hearts, homes marriages…?

So, this is by far my longest blog, and if you’re still reading, you deserve a prize.  My last thought for the morning:

Saralynn held my hand this morning walking down the stairs, as she always does.  She was, of course, very chatty, as usual.  All the while I’m listening to her excitedly tell me all about something I don’t uderstand all of, I had this sudden thought:  History was made today.  The face of America has changed.  The history books will have to be re-written.  What we know of politics, and many other things has changed.  And my child will know no different.  What is different and life-changing for me will be a way of life for her.  She won’t know what significance this brings to the world.  She will grow up with new leaders in the White House and will one day ask questions as to why this was so historic, maybe why it took us as a country so long to get to this place.  So, to those of us with children that will grow up with history being the mundane, please join together and pray for the hedge of protection Jesus offers to be over our children.  May their hearts be guarded by the words we teach them and LIVE OUT before them.  Jesus, continue to reign over all of us, and be glorified!!!

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1 Comment

  1. Mary Johnston said,

    November 6, 2008 at 12:02 am

    MaryBeth,
    Pam knows I love blogs and sent me your link. You have touched my heart with your very insightful words. Thank you for reminding us again that our God reigns, and what most importantly our job is to pray, for our nation and for that hedge of protection around our children and grandchildren.
    Bless you! Mary Johnston


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