Prayer: Dear Lord, We are grateful that there is a national day honoring You. May You be blessed by the prayers of Your people. Amen.
Scripture: May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in You. Psalm 33:22 NIV
“Hope” is a sometimes confusing and misunderstood word. As Christians we do not put our hope in the things of this world. We do not even hope that… We hope in the Lord. Christ is the actual living essence, expectation, and expression of our eternal hope. Our hope in the Lord is where we put our confidence for life and blessing, both eternally and here on this earth. It is how we manage to get out of the bed each morning to face another day and it is how we lay our heads down and rest through the night, knowing God is in control in a world or life that seems out of control.
Hope is always the proper response in any circumstance. In times of trial, we know that God knows what He is doing and everything He does is good; therefore, we can be certain (hope) that what we are experiencing is and will be “good.” As Christians, we claim Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Who works? God works! All the worrying, manipulating, compromising, fit-throwing, pity-partying in the world is not going to do us a bit of good – but God works for the good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. So what is our response to trials and concerns in our own life and the seven identified “powers of our nation;” family, the church, education system, government, media, military, and business system? How do we respond with hope, in hope?
We pray. Pray God’s will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Pray God’s authority over these, that He would be recognized as Sovereign God, Creator, and Redeemer. Pray that in all of these areas we would seek to obey and glorify Him, that we cannot continue to ask a pure and mighty God to continue to bless a person or nation that does not bless Him in return. Pray that He would strengthen us, His followers, to speak truth in love, to love Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and to love our neighbor as ourselves, treating others as we would want to be treated. Pray that His love would shine light in dark places and that those things done in the darkness of corruption, selfishness, destruction, and pride would not only be exposed by the light but to The Light. Pray that evil would pass away and the lost would be brought to life eternal in Christ.
Our response is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. This is the fruit of the Spirit, the signs on the outside of us that God is working in us. It is what the world can see with their own eyes in our daily lives that we are actually different than the rest of the world, that we do not crumble under pressure but astonishingly persevere, seeking the opportunity to grow in and glorify God with each passing trial, steadfast in our belief that His mercy is new every morning and that He is able to keep that which we entrust to Him. If a matter is in God’s hands, we should have peace. It is only when we take it back under our limited authority and resources that we are in a heap of trouble. Prayer hands our concerns, fears, needs, life, family, community, school, nation – everything over to the one and only true God, who hears our prayers and responds to our faithfulness in His perfect character.
If we look with earthly eyes at earthly circumstances, we may not have an expectation for good things to come our way. If we look through the eyes of our heart, knowing where our hope comes from and pour out our hearts in prayer, we have the promise of peace, purpose, perseverance, and eternal prosperity that will outlast any problem on this earth.
What is on your mind and heart concerning our nation right now? Please join the millions of people who will be praying for our nation today. To learn more, go to www.nationaldayofprayer.org
Copyright Kathy Branzell. Email firstname.lastname@example.org