The 63rd annual National Day of Prayer is only a few days away! So, here are some ways you can get involved:
Find an Event
There are more than 40,000 prayer gatherings taking place from coast to coast at a variety of venues and locations. From parades and rallies to church gatherings, there will be thousands of people crying out to God in prayer and worshiping Him so don’t miss the largest solemn assembly in America! Find a group near you and make it a priority to pause even for 1-hour to pray. To find a gathering near you, click here to search our Event Finder
The National Observance in Washington D.C. will be broadcast LIVE on GOD TV (DirecTV channel 365) and their networks on Thursday, May 1. You can also watch LIVE right on the National Day of Prayer website. This special event will begin at 9:00 a.m. and conclude at 12:00 noon EST. Speakers include Anne Graham Lotz (daughter of Rev. Billy Graham), Dr. James and Shirley Dobson, Congressman Robert Aderholt, Mrs. Vonette Bright, The Honorable Bob McEwen, Congressman Mike McIntyre, Don Moen, Rabbi Jonathan Cahn, Chaplain Father Patrick Conroy, Dr. Dick Eastman, Mr. David Butts, Mr. John Bornschein, and many more. Click here for a program line-up and to watch LIVE
At 12:00 noon – starting on the East Coast – the National Day of Prayer Task Force is encouraging groups far and wide to read and pray the National Prayer. This will create a wave of reverent prayer and repentance across the country ending at 3:00 p.m. EST. The National Prayer was written by Honorary Chairman, Anne Graham Lotz and is available in print and audio download format on the National Day of Prayer website. Click here to read the National Prayer now
National Prayer Call
On Thursday, May 1 at 10:00 p.m. EST, the National Prayer Call will begin featuring prayer leaders from across the country and we invite you to join with us. All you need is your telephone. Simply call 712-432-0075 (enter PIN: 4961322#). During this call we will pray and celebrate all that God has done as His people unite in one voice.
Mobilize Your Community to Prayer
There is still time to find the resources you need to mobilize your church, business, school, and community to prayer. There are a number of event ideas, promotional tools and resources you can use right now to get started. Also be sure to list your gathering on our website so others can find it. The Scriptures tell us that where two or more are gathered, there He is in their midst (Matthew 18:20). So, start simple and enjoy the journey. Organizing prayer is exciting and we are delighted you have joined with us in this ministry to our nation.
Our goal is to see communities transformed across America through the power of prayer and that happens one family at a time. Lives are being changed and we pray in expectation believing that God can and will make a difference if we seek Him (II Chronicles 7:14). Together we can make a difference – ONE VOICE, UNITED IN PRAYER!
Just in time for the National Day of Prayer, download (free of charge) this powerful song from Barlow Girl, featuring Adam Agee of Stellar Kart, Leigh Cappillino of Point Of Grace, and David Leonard of Jackson Waters:
WE PRAY download
For the tired and the weary
Lost and confused
Hopeless and needy
With nothing to lose
For those who are falling
Or have already fallen away
Cause Our hearts are exploding
With compassion and love
For a world that is dying
To be lifted up (oh)
Humbly we seek Your face
Broken yet unafraid to be, you hear
We leave it all in Your hands
Know that you hear us when we pray
Peace and forgiveness
For the nations at war
Strength in their weakness
When they can take no more
Mercy, redemption, healing
And for You to be Lord of all
Our hearts are exploding
With compassion and love
For a world that is crying
To be lifted up (oh)
Father in Heaven
The Giver of life
Your Kingdom forever be glorified
You're all can will unite us
And heal our divide
We bow down before You
Oh Lord hear our cry
We pray, humbly we seek your face
Trust that you hear us when we pray
Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.
LAGERBERG, CLINT/PRICE, OTTO MONTGOMERY JR.
As Chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force, I’d like to take this opportunity to speak to you about a matter that is crucial to the future of our nation – prayer! In 2 Chronicles 7:14, the Lord proclaims “If my people, who call on My name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, I will forgive their sins, and I will heal their land.” This verse makes it clear that God cares about and responds to the attitudes and actions of His people. The continuing moral decline in our nation and the battle over the definition of traditional marriage is a troubling indicator that the most fundamental pillars of our society are hanging in the balance. This serves as an urgent wake-up call that we cannot become complacent in striving to uphold the beliefs that provided the very framework upon which our beloved country was established.
History has recorded a wealth of evidence that our founding fathers intended the United States to be a haven for those dedicated to biblical truth. These men had the foresight not only to install constitutional safeguards to our freedoms, but also to warn of what would occur in the absence of these ideals. Daniel Webster said it this way: “To preserve the government we must also preserve morals. Morality rests on religion; if you destroy the foundation, the superstructure must fall. When the public mind becomes vitiated and corrupt, laws are a nullity and constitutions are waste paper.” What a chilling description of where we are today!
Patrick Henry articulated a similar caution: “The great pillars of all government and of social life [are] virtue, morality, and religion. This is the armor … and this alone, that renders us invincible.” His exhortation brings to mind the verse in Scripture that points to the source of our effectiveness as Christ’s representatives: “‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty” (Zechariah 4:6). The strength of our nation lies not in our military prowess (though that is certainly important to our defense), but in our commitment to absolute truth.
As I mentioned in our last newsletter, the theme for the 2014 National Day of Prayer observance is “One Voice, United in Prayer,” based on Romans 15:6: “So that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” This is undoubtedly a time of desperate need for the United States. The virtue that once defined our country is deteriorating rapidly and is being invaded by evils such as pornography, abortion, infidelity, same-sex marriage and the agenda of the far Left. We must humble ourselves before Almighty God and seek His forgiveness and restoration.
While America’s present depravity often seems irreversible, Scripture assures us that it is never too late for repentance. Thankfully, we serve a God who stands ready to work in ways that exceed all of our expectations. His Word offers this heartening reminder: “Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor His ear too dull to hear” (Isaiah 59:1). If we will remain on our knees and do our part to defend morality, we have every reason to believe God will respond mightily.
In these few remaining days leading up to the 2014 National Day of Prayer on May 1 – and on that occasion, in particular – it’s my prayer that the Body of Christ will recommit itself to vigilant and unceasing intercession. If we do not weary in this, there’s no telling how powerfully God will answer!
Along with my letter, you will find our April Newsletter enclosed with a number of ways you can get involved. In fact, May 1 is not the end but rather the beginning of a six-month effort to mobilize our nation to prayer. Early indicators suggest that this National Day of Prayer will be the largest ever recorded and it will also be the starting block for a revival focused initiative where our team will take to the road in a specially equipped bus for the Pray for America Rally Bus Tour II, which will conclude October 1st in Hollywood, California where a five-day prayer gathering, we call The Summons, will take place. Our prayer is that thousands of people will engage and thousands more will give their lives to Jesus Christ.
I ask you to prayerfully consider financially partnering with us as we stand in the gap for our beloved country. There has been no more critical time in our history – much is at stake. May I count on you to support our mission? Become a Friend of the National Day of Prayer today. Together, we can make a difference!
Mrs. James C. Dobson (Shirley)
Chairman, NDP Task Force
On May 1, 2014, the National Day of Prayer (NDP) will take place and millions of Americans will unite at more than 42,000 locations from coast to coast to pray. Every year there is a theme that the Chairman of the NDP Task Force, Mrs. Shirley Dobson, wife of Family Talk founder, Dr. James Dobson, will select as a rally cry, and this year the theme is “One Voice, United in Prayer”, based on Romans 15:6.
So, this begs the question; does prayer really work? After all, why would millions of people stop what they are doing, gather together and then speak into the air or in the thought recesses of their minds with some expectation that things are really going to change? Is there truly someone listening who can do anything about the current state of affairs in our homes, work places, communities or even our nation? This is the 63rd annual National Day of Prayer so where is all the change these people have been crying out to God for?
Before we can talk about whether or not prayer makes a difference in our nation, we have to first address prayer for what it is and if it is making a difference in our personal lives. So, let’s jump into one of the greatest theological questions of all time. It was the disciples who inquired first, so you are not alone. While Jesus was praying he was asked, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John (known as John the Baptist) taught his disciples” (Luke 11:1). They could have asked him anything. They could have asked, “Lord, teach us how to turn water into wine” or “Lord, teach us to raise the dead”. No, they asked him how to pray and what he did was teach them how to build a personal relationship with God. Then and only then could they be ready to learn how to pray as a group with an understanding of what a solemn assembly was all about.
Jennifer Kennedy Dean states, “Prayer is an interchange of love between the Father and His child. That desire you feel to pray is His love drawing you to delight in Him. You only need to respond.”1 For Christians, prayer (proseuche in Greek) is “communion with God.” It is the medium of divine revelation. Through prayer, we actually experience relationship with God. The quality of our prayer life then determines the quality of our relationship with God.
Prayer is talking with God and listening to Him, and it is enjoying the presence of God. In his book, Prayer on Fire, Fred Hartley describes prayer as, “What we do. It is our initiative to meet God, whether we are asking for favors, singing in celebration, or crying out in distress. Regardless of what shape or size in comes in, prayer is our effort to engage God.”2 Prayer can take many forms, including worship, confession, thanksgiving, praise, petition (asking for what we need and desire), waiting (silent listening and sensing of God), and warfare (command).3 As believers, we can pray in the Spirit—even in language that may be unknown to us but is fully known to God (1 Cor 14:2, 27–28).
Our goal through prayer must be to know God better, to experience the fullness of relationship with Him. Through prayer, we honor Him. We give something back to the Almighty, something He desires greatly. God reveals Himself to us in the “prayer closet”—a quiet place where we cannot be distracted in our time with Him.
God desires relationship, but for many years I was preoccupied with works. Not only that, I was preoccupied with self. When I prayed, it was a preconceived line of thought followed by a list of needs and I was often impatient for results. In my mind, God needed to provide fast results, and if one prayer was not sufficient, I took measures into my own hands. Hey, at least I gave God a chance to perform, and then I did what any good Christian should do, right? But I was still missing the point.
The Apostle Paul tells us in Philippians 3:10,
[For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection [which it exerts over believers], and that I may so share His sufferings as to be continually transformed [in spirit into His likeness even] to His death. (amp)
And in Ephesians 1:17, he wrote, “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.” Paul got it. And he wasn’t alone. Enoch, the great-grandfather of Noah, had such a deep relationship with God that one day God just took him to heaven (Gen 5:22–23). Later, Elijah, who lived every day in wholehearted devotion to the Father, was escorted to heaven in a chariot of fire. That must have been an incredible sight.
Throughout time, God has opened Himself up to men and women to initiate friendship. Friends with the Almighty—what a concept! In Ten Prayers God Always Says Yes To, DeStefano states,
The fact is that we have a God who loves to communicate. And the reason is that communication is the starting point for any relationship. Everyone has heard it said that God wants to be able to have a relationship with us. There is no truer point in all theology. Indeed, the thrust of God’s communication with mankind over the course of history has always been relational and not conceptual. That’s why he actually prefers it when we come to have faith in him through prayer, instead of through logical arguments alone. God doesn’t just want to satisfy a curiosity we have, He wants to enter into a friendship with us.4
If you knew that ours was the last generation before the coming of Christ, how would you live? When you stand before the throne of God, will you know Him intimately as your friend, or will you be a stranger? Are you going through the routine of your Christian walk without experiencing friendship with Elohim? Through Spirit-led prayer, your eyes will be opened, and you will have an indescribable relationship with God that is rich and fulfilling.
In Experiencing Prayer with Jesus, Dr. Henry Blackaby writes, “How deep is your relationship with the Lord as you pray? Do you pour your heart out to Him with complete confidence and trust in His help, because you’ve come to know and experience His love? It takes time, like any relationship. The more time you spend with Him, the more you’ll come to understand His ways, His heart, and His will as you pray.”5
Prayer is making a difference, transforming the landscape of homes and communities across the globe. A few years ago, Heritage Builders conducted an unofficial study of the American family to determine the factors that increased overall family health. What they discovered was truly incredible. A summary of their findings indicated that families who ate together at least four days a week and prayed at the dinner table showed the highest percentage of honor roll students and church-attending teenagers between the ages of 15 and 19.
A Lifeway Research survey estimates that 70 percent of Christian teens and young adults will walk away from the Church during college.6 But families that prayed together were among the 30 percent whose teenagers were more grounded in their faith.7 In the Lifeway survey, participants indicated that prayer was not just a part of religious practice; rather, it was the concerted effort of parents making sure that prayer was emphasized in daily living, not simply as a response to life’s trials and tribulations. Even secular universities agree that prayer makes a difference in relationships.
You may have heard the saying, “A couple that prays together, stays together.” Although we know this to be true, it is helpful to examine the evidence that best supports this common perception. An article published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology had this to say about prayer:8 “There is some evidence that religiosity is similarly related to several positive relationship outcomes. Specifically, greater involvement in religious activities [including prayer] is related to higher levels of marital satisfaction … and marital stability with three longitudinal studies indicating that religiousness predicts lower risk of divorce and divorce proneness.” The report goes on to cite that “prayer may help couples to more often ‘think of the needs of others, be more loving and forgiving, treat each other with respect, and resolve conflict.’”9 The researchers suggest that the relationship people experience with God through prayer helps them handle their emotions, be more empathetic, become less self-focused, and gain greater skills in reconciliation. They also note that “prayer for the partner might prime partners to think about each other in more loving or compassionate terms and so treat each other with greater respect and sensitivity.”
Praying regularly together also “helped couples prevent conflict in their relationships.” Researchers note that couples who included “God in their marriage through prayer” were more skilled in problem solving and reconciliation. Other couples “reported that prayer alleviated tension and facilitated open communication during conflict.”
Beyond the Home
Even if God didn’t answer the prayers of His people, according to research, the positive effects of prayer are undeniable. When a father prays for his children, what is he demonstrating in that action? He is showing them true humility, compassion, and love. He is also showing that he is accountable to someone bigger than himself and that there is a structured chain of command that keeps the family healthy and aligned.
A recent survey revealed that 93 percent of women wanted their husbands to take on the spiritual leadership of the home.10 These same women indicated that they would give greater respect and support to their husbands if they demonstrated more effort to lead in this area. Now, let me ask you: if women respected their husbands more because they were taking the lead in prayer at home, would this not have a positive impact on the overall health of families?
With this in mind, imagine what the action of prayer does for a community. If religious leaders are praying for civil leaders, they are honoring that which God has put in place. As Romans 13:1 states, “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established.” Paul also encouraged believers to pray for their leaders: “I urge … that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim 2:1–4).
A nation can be punished by the actions of its leaders (2 Sam 24), and a nation can be punished with poor leaders because the hearts of the people are evil (2 Kgs 17:1–23). In the same way, a nation can be blessed with good leadership because the people honor God (Prov 8:14–16; 2 Chr 7:14). We can honor the structure of leadership that God has ordained (Exod 18:21; Deut 17:14–20), and we can do this even if we do not agree with all the decisions those in authority are making; that’s just all the more reason to pray for them. The action of prayer is healthy for a home and a community. We know that God does hear these prayers, which is where the real power resides and the evidence is undeniable. So, with a resounding “Yes” we can say that prayer does work! It is making a difference in our nation today. From the farm lands to the booming metropolis’ of this great country, prayer is interfering with the plans of the enemy and I could share with you story after story of the change that is often unseen or unreported by the media. From the various reports showing declines in crime, cancer admissions, abortion, and divorce to the restoration of marriages, individuals in prisons, new salvations and more. The challenge we have today is to remain in prayer. The stories of change are powerful, showing that God does hear and heal, but the problem is that we often get complacent, return to our old ways and then wonder why our home life, work life and national life are all in chaos.
The need to pray is as great as the authority of God, who commands us to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess 5:17 nkjv). Prayer is so vital to all that God wants to do on the earth, and it is so essential to us, that He commands us to do it all the time. But the key to successful prayer is the relationship that develops in and through this interstellar conversation. Sometimes we just need to listen, while other times require focused intercession, even repentance, praise and petition. If you want to know the will of God, it is discovered only through devotion to the Word through prayer. So, let’s pray as we have never prayed before and be united in One Voice. Start now - start today.
About the Author:
John Bornschein is the Vice Chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force and Senior Pastor of Calvary Fellowship Fountain Valley church. At 37 years of age, he and his wife, Brandi, have 5 children and together they have served in ministry for more than 20 years. To learn more, visit www.NationalDayofPrayer.org
1 Jennifer Kennedy Dean, Heart’s Cry: Principles of Prayer (Birmingham: New Hope Publishers, 2007), 18.
2 Fred A. Hartley, III, Prayer on Fire: What Happens When the Holy Spirit Ignites Your Prayers (Colorado Springs: NavPress, 2006), 16.
3 List compiled by All About God Ministries, http://www.AllAboutGod.com, cited on National Day of Prayer Task Force Web site, http://www.nationaldayofprayer.org.
4 Anthony DeStefano, Ten Prayers God Always Says Yes To: Divine Answers to Life’s Most Difficult Problems (New York: Doubleday, 2007), 10-13.
5 Henry Blackaby and Norman Blackaby, Experiencing Prayer with Jesus: The Power of His Presence and Example (Sisters, OR: Multnomah), 28.
6 Lifeway Research survey conducted April–May 2007, cited in Cathy Lynn Grossman, “Young Adults Aren’t Sticking with Church,” USA Today, August 6, 2007.
7 The Barna Group Ltd, “Twentysomethings Struggle to Find Their Place in Christian Churches,” September 24, 2003, http://www.barna.org/barna-update/article/5-barna-update/127-twentysomethings-struggle-to-find-their-place-in-christian-churches?q=twentysomethings.
8 Frank D. Fincham, et al., “Spiritual Behaviors and Relationship Satisfaction: A Critical Analysis of the Role of Prayer,” Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology 27, no. 4 (2008): 362–88.
9 M.G. Dudley and F.A. Kosinski, “Religiosity and Marital Satisfaction: A Research Note,” Review of Religious Research 32 (1990): 78–86, cited in Fincham et al., “Spiritual Behaviors.”
10 Heritage Builders Association, http://www.heritagebuilders.com.
As you prepare to unite in ONE VOICE on May 1st for the National Day of Prayer, we wanted to let you know about a strategic partnership the National Day of Prayer Task Force has made with Outreach Inc., the largest provider of church outreach products and services in the world! To continue to serve the needs of those hosting National Day of Prayer events, Outreach is pleased to offer an extensive line-up of customizable outreach materials to help you mobilize your community to prayer. When we say ‘customizable’, this means you’re able to add your location name, dates, times, special messages, etc. to postcards invitations, and a variety of both indoor and outdoor banners. When hosting an event, there is always a need to communicate the ‘who, what, where, and why’. With Outreach’s experience and quality customer service, our desire is to make things easy for you to promote and have a successful event. What more important thing could we involve ourselves with than coming alongside those calling our nation to prayer!
With our postcards – featuring the 2014 theme – you’re able to customize the front and back, including a logo, map, and whatever else you’d like to say and we’ll handle the printing, mailing services, and United States Post Office delivery. You can upload your own mailing list or purchase one directly through us. Below are some examples of how our customizable NDP resources can be used. To learn more, please call Outreach at 1-800-991-6011 or visit us online at www.Outreach.com/NDP
Additionally – and most importantly – please be sure to you check out the new (and super fast!) Event Finder to post or find an event in your area at www.NationalDayofPrayer.org/events
Available in 5 sizes, these horizontal banners will draw the attention of passing traffic or tell visitors that they have found the right location for your National Day of Prayer event! Every banner is custom printed with your message - FREE! Optional A-frame banner stand sold separately. Click Here to see Designs
Custom Postcard Invitations
Invite every family in your community to your National Day of Prayer event for just pennies per postcard! These over-sized, eye-catching 8.5" x 5.5" postcards are custom printed with your church logo, map, and custom invitation message - FREE! Add the Full Service package with a demographic mailing list, mail services, and post office delivery for only a few cents more! To learn more, call 800.991.6011 or Click Here to see Designs
Mailers (small postcards)
These 4.25" x 5.5" do-it-yourself postcards are easy to personalize with your National Day of Prayer event information with a FREE MS Word template available on Outreach.com. Each 8.5" x 11" sheet has four perforated cards that are great to mail or to use as hand-out invitations. Not compatible with inkjet or risograph printers Click Here to see Designs
Promote The Family Project around your church and decorate your lobby, classrooms, hallways and stage with indoor banners. Available in a variety of sizes and material choices like fabric, vinyl, and StickUp, every banner can be custom printed with your logo or church name! Optional stands and EzHang clips make displaying them around your church easy and fast. Click Here to see Designs
New one-time use Window Banners feature stunning graphics on one side and a clear, unobstructed view from the other. Virtually all glass surfaces now have the potential for promoting National Day of Prayer and welcoming visitors! These banners come in a stock 3' x 3' size that fits most windows, or Outreach can custom print a size to fit your window—call 800.991.6011 for pricing. 3' x 3' banner size also available in StickUp adhesive and vinyl. Click Here to see Designs
“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, Coming down upon the beard, Even Aaron's beard, Coming down upon the edge of his robes. It is like the dew of Hermon Coming down upon the mountains of Zion; For there the LORD commanded the blessing - life forever.” Psalm 133:1-3 (NAS)
What images pop into your head when you hear the word, “unity?” I picture peace, joy, love, patience and even discipleship or mentoring, kindness, … oh, wait! I picture the fruit of the Spirit when I think of unity! Psalm 133 describes how “good and pleasant” unity is in the eyes of God; it is a fresh anointing of God that flows and not only covers us from head to toe, but covers the body of Christ from head to toe. It is also a generous blessing that brings life giving, life-extending power to our days.
Jesus did not call His church to compete with one another; He brought us together to complete His body, to complete the tasks for His Kingdom to come and will to be done. Colossians 3:12-15 says,
“So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience ; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone ; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. 14 Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. 15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful."
When we “put on” these attributes and bind them with love, we are dressed for success. This lifestyle models Christ’s rule of our hearts as we lay down any thought of selfish preferences and join hands with one another to fulfill our Kingdom purpose while on earth. Satan hates it; and has to flee when we join together on our knees to seek God for our cities, church and country. Unity in prayer and purpose will also transform nations, but it has to begin with an individual decision to humble yourself and commit to being a forgiving, patient, compassionate, contributing member of the bond of unity. You can bet, as soon as you make this commitment, it will be tested over and over again. Stand firm. As the National Day of Prayer approaches, we are praying that there will be many events that gather people from various churches all over their cities. That Pastors will lock arms and congregations from various denominations will lift up holy hands together to praise and worship our Lord.
Division destroys; it destroys our witness, destroys our influence, and destroys destiny; our Kingdom usefulness. The cure for division is thankfulness. A thankful heart adds strength to the bond and multiplies its impact. Unity multiples personal growth, gains spiritual ground, and brings glory to God. My prayer for all of us, as brothers and sisters in the family of God, is that we will dwell in unity.
- Kathy Branzell, Director of Partnerships
The other day, a friend of mine sent me an email containing an observation that he had made. He was questioning why so many in the church seem to use two particular verses in Matthew, chapter 18, as texts to illustrate prayer. His perspective was that they were not about prayer in specific at all, but in the context, of church discipline. Most will be familiar with verses 18 and 19, "I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. "Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.”
While he was correct, that Jesus did give these two examples in the context of discipline, the principle and examples were really instruction by Jesus on the power of authority and agreement. Jesus’ authority, imparted by Him to us, was for the purpose of establishing His will, in any and all situations. For the purpose of this article, I want to focus specifically on verse 19, ‘if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for’. All it takes is two, agreeing together, on His word and His will. Our unity, one mindedness, and agreement as believers about His will are essential if we hope to represent His authority in asking. And this is where unity in prayer and petition, ‘asking’ if you will, come in. The definition of the Greek word translated ‘ask’, is to ask, beg, call for, crave, desire, request, or require. Emphatic, authoritative ‘asking’, realizing who we are in Him, our authority as believers, and remembering Who He is! God Almighty! The One Who is able to do exceeding, abundantly, above anything that we can even ask or think!
So what does this have to do with the National Day of Prayer on May 1st? Everything! If we have been granted His authority to petition the Father in His name, and if just two of us can join together, asking, desiring and requesting that God move according to His will, and if we have been assured by His Word that it will be done – imagine, then, how pleased the Father must be, and how the heavens must resound with the cries of millions who assemble each year on behalf of America and her people! Imagine if millions of God’s people, who are called by His name, humble themselves and pray, and seek His face, and turn from their wicked ways on the National Day of Pray, what glory the Father would receive! And what transformation we would experience if together, we called upon God to tear down the strongholds of the enemy in the United States of America! Like the Israelites who circled the great, impenetrable walls of Jericho and who with one mighty voice let out a shout, and saw that mighty stronghold crumble into dust! The same God who was with them, is with us!
So join us this year! Make the National Day of Prayer a priority in your schedule! Join together with millions of other believers with one voice and unite together in prayer! Click here to fine an event in your area.
- Dion Elmore, Director
Does God answer the prayers of a Christian who deliberately sins? When asked that question, theologian R.C. Sproul responded this way:
When we refer to Christians who deliberately sin, we’re talking about every Christian who ever lived, and we’re talking about something that Christians do every day of their lives. We can talk about sins that are committed in ignorance and so on, but I hope we recognize that the vast majority of the sins we commit are done deliberately. We sin because we want to, because we choose to.
If God refused to hear the prayers of Christians who deliberately sinned against him and then repented, God would not be listening to very many prayers. But we have the promise of God: If we truly repent, He will forgive us.
P.R.A.Y. for Today
Praise God for knowing everything about you; repent by acknowledging how often you want to sin and choose to sin; ask Him to help you better understand the ways you deceive yourself about your sin; yield to Him by claiming and enjoying His forgiveness.
- Shirley Dobson, Chairman, National Day of Prayer Task Force