First Thursday Call to Prayer, August 4th, 2016


I am coming to the end of our two-week family vacation. I have loved every minute from walking the beach early each morning, to basking in the sun for hours, to playing bocce ball in the sand.  My favorite times have been my own extended quiet times, as well as when the family has shared God’s Word together in devotions and as we have listened to God Speaking.

But I have also made the time to read.  One of the books I have read is by Dave Butts, entitled Forgotten Power. In it he has some memorable quotes, one of which I want to share with you.  

It is written by W. A. McKay…When Elijah prayed, the nation was reformed; when Hezekiah prayed, the people were healed; when the disciples prayed, Pentecost appeared; when John Wesley and his companions prayed, England was revived; when John Knox prayed, Scotland was refreshed; when the Sabbath-school teachers at Tannybrake prayed, eleven thousand were added to the church in one year; when Luther prayed, the papacy was shaken… To your knees, then ye Christians! Plead until the windows open, plead until the springs unlock, plead until the clouds part, plead until the rains descend, plead until the floods of blessing come.[1]

Having just witnessed two national political conventions and all the accompanying rhetoric, it seems more obvious than ever that our nation desperately needs prayer. I would like to make a suggestion concerning the National Day of Prayer Monthly Prayer Call.  I wonder if we might have more participants if we could make it simpler and more “user friendly” to our broad base of pray-ers.

On the first Thursday of each month I would like to ask you to devote one hour to uninterrupted, focused, private prayer.  In Daniel 9:3, Daniel turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer…  Jesus Himself instructed, When you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen…

If you give one hour of your time to private prayer, then feel free to pray in other ways that are optional and totally up to you.  You can pray over the phone with a prayer partner or in a group that you choose to gather or dial into the scheduled monthly national prayer call.  But first I am asking for you to pray.

  • Privately. 
  • On your own. 
  • For one hour.
  • On the first Thursday of each month.
  • Then, as an option, in whatever other way you choose. 

I pray that these monthly Prayer Calls will be reenergized, then build and culminate powerfully, so that on the first Thursday in May we will reach a spiritual “crescendo” of prayer as we come together for our Annual National Observance.

To help keep us focused, on the day before the first Thursday of each month, I will ask the national office to post a written prayer that you can use as a pattern for your own.  It is not meant to be prayed verbatim, or as a substitute for your own prayer.  It will be centered on one of the names of God.  Look up the Scriptures that are referenced and use them in your own prayer. My hope is that this pattern will help keep us all on the same page, strengthening the fervency of our faith, as we stand shoulder-to-shoulder in the battle for our nation…on our knees.

Until the Fire Falls, 






Anne Graham Lotz






[1] Forgotten Power: A Simple Theology for a Praying Church, David Butts, PrayerShop Publishing, Terre Haute, IN; 2015, p.6