This year has brought us one of the most divisive elective cycles in recent memory. Many people that I speak to, regardless of political affiliation, are not excited about the choices they have for President. Both candidates have characteristics that could be defined as “unfit,” whether it is in temperament, decision making, morality, unpredictability, criminal behavior, experience, judgment, health, or political vision. It is in this season that we need to pray for our country more than we do for our political parties. We are a nation off-course and the choice of our leader will make irrevocable changes to the intellectual, emotional, spiritual, and moral direction we take as Americans.
Therefore, I would like to invite you to pray with me for our country. Over the next 7 days, I will be making a new post each day. Each post will include a link to a reading from the Psalms and a brief instruction on how to use this reading as a guide for prayer. Let us put aside our desire to see a specific person win the election and have the courage to pray boldly for God to stay his judgment and place in office the man or woman who will lead us to be the country that God desires (and designed) us to be.
Will you please pray with me?
Read Psalm 39
Identify what God is saying about Himself in this passage. Boil it down into a one or two-word summary (e.g., God is ____ ) and confess that truth back to God, asking Him to reveal Himself in this way through your day and this election cycle.
v. 1-2 Ask God to help you guard your ways and to not sin with your tongue. But also ask that you will not remain silent, either with your mouth or with your vote. Ask Him to give you a passion for overcoming evil, instead of withdrawing from it. To keep you from being mute and silent so that your distress does not become worse.
v.3-6 Ask God to give you a passion that burns within you for wisdom. Speak and ask God to make known to you what is the end for this country and the measure of our days. Ask Him to let you know how fleeting we are as a nation!
Confess that regardless of how long we exist on this earth He has made our days as nothing before Him. We are only a few millimeters on the timeline of eternity. We are only a mere breath!
Pause. Think about the significance of this and let this truth impact the anxiety over the election.
Meditate about the significance of this and let this truth impact the anxiety over the election.
Ask God to make our brief days, both as individuals and as a nation, count for something. Admit the futility of heaping up wealth and not knowing who will gather. Ask God to give us a greater purpose than Red or Blue states, political dogma, or social agendas. May we pattern our lives after Him
v. 7-9 Ask God to help us to pattern our lives after Him and to put our hope in Him. Confess your habit of putting your faith and hope in other sources instead of God and ask for forgiveness. Ask God to move us as a nation away from hoping in things or people other than Him.
Ask Him to deliver us from all of our transgressions as a country. To keep us from being the scorn and the reproach of the self-righteous or arrogant nations who have turned from Him.
Ask that if we are silent it be because we are convicted by God or because we are trying to hear His voice. May His hand cover our mouths so that we see our condition as God sees it and we may refrain from speaking or acting foolishly.
v. 10-11 Ask that God remove His scourge from our nation so that we are not overcome by the blow of His hand. Acknowledge that we deserve discipline from Him and ask that our nation will listen to His rebuke and turn from their wicked ways otherwise our wealth will be consumed and our days will be extinguished like a breath.
v.12-13 Pray these last two verses directly to God regarding our nation and ourselves:
“Hear my prayer, Lord,
listen to my cry for help;
do not be deaf to my weeping.
I dwell with you as a foreigner,
a stranger, as all my ancestors were.
13 Look away from me, that I may enjoy life again
before I depart and am no more.”
Thank God for hearing and answering your prayers.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.