On Sunday, July 3, 2016, over one and a half million people in thousands of churches in all 50 states will be on their knees, praying for our nation. To join this movement, visit Call2Fall.com and click “I’m in.” When you do, you will see your first name and your state pop up on the front page of the website.
In 2009, I was challenged by an elderly lady to use my influence to call our nation to “our knees” in prayer (see 2 Chron.7:14). That same day I read about the Continental Congress’ call to prayer in 1775 that resulted in 3 million colonial Americans gathering on their knees in repentant prayer for our troubled, fledgling country. That was the beginning of Call2Fall.
Many of our Founding Fathers were moved to tears and to greater dependence on God as they faced grave uncertainty on the eve of war with Great Britain. May we, too, humble ourselves in prayer before God in this pivotal year for our nation!
Talk to your pastor and ask if your church could set aside a few minutes in your July 3rd worship services to pray for our nation. There are many church-friendly tools and resources like this brief video that can help your church have a meaningful Call2Fall. By signing up, your church will be listed on the map to let believers in your community will know your church will take part.
In fact, we are partnering with the National Day of Prayer, the Congressional Prayer Caucus, Intercessors for America and many others who are collaborating to call America to pray. Call2Fall is uniquely the church-based, worship-service focused part of the effort. We are on Facebook and Twitter, so a couple of ways you can help is by posting a message on your Facebook page or Tweet about the Call2Fall. So help us spread the word.
Join us in declaring our national “dependence” upon the Lord on Sunday, July 3rd. If enough Americans will unite in humble, repentant prayer, I am trusting that God will hear our prayers, forgive our sin, and heal our land (2 Chron.7:14).
President, Family Research Council
You should know, that on Monday January 18, 2016, we celebrate the life and legacy of the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. I extend warm greetings to my African-American brothers and sisters and to all people of good will who follow Dr. King's example.
You should also know, that on April 4, 1968, Dr. King was taken from us, much too quickly and much too violently. Yet, the manner in which he left us is not what I wish to dwell on as we commemorate his life. Rather, I believe it is important to reflect on the lessons he left us, the lessons of his life and the lessons of his legacy.
Dr. Martin King’s life was a life lived in service to others. His life was a life lived calling for an end to the injustice caused by racial inequality, the injustice caused by poverty, and the injustice caused by war. Despite his best efforts and unending dedication, he did not witness an end to these injustices in his lifetime.
Reverend Doctor King’s legacy to us is this: that in our time and in our day, right here and now, we are called to end the injustice of racial inequality, the injustice of poverty, and the injustice of all war. We are the heirs of Dr. King’s legacy. We must not falter in our efforts.
I want you to know of a sermon Dr. King delivered, just two short months before his untimely passing, at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia on February 4, 1968:
“And so Jesus gave us a new norm of greatness. If you want to be important—wonderful. If you want to be recognized—wonderful. If you want to be great—wonderful. But recognize that he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. That's a new definition of greatness. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve. You don't have to know about Plato and Aristotle to serve. You don't have to know Einstein's theory of relativity to serve. You don't have to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve. You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love. And you can be that servant.”
As we celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his message of service and a more peaceful world, let us continue to imitate him in our deeds and in our actions. Let us be the servant that Dr. King so eloquently described. I wish God’s blessings on each and every one of you, my brothers and sisters.
State Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz, New York
On September 9, 2015, the National Day of Prayer Task Force and its many ministry partners began a 56-day trek around the country, traveling 5,915 miles through 26 states to mobilize prayer on more than 50 college campuses. The tour concluded today, November 4, 2015, in Washington D.C. at the Department of Education.
Relationship is the core of effective, powerful prayer. Each of us has been given the ability to come before God’s throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16) at any time to communicate with our Creator. This is one of the truths that makes our faith unique, but it can be difficult for our minds to grasp. On an earthly level, we are not accustomed to this kind of unlimited access to those in authority, but God is different. We can approach Him in an instant. He wants to hear from us and is pleased when we call! He will never put us “on hold,” tell us He will respond later, His “phone” off the hook or let an answering machine take our message.
The real power of prayer in history…is the corporate action of a Savior-Intercessor and His community, a volume and energy of prayer organized in the Holy Spirit and in the Church the Spirit creates… True prayer…is in the most organic and vital context of affairs, private and public, if all things work together, deeply and afar, for the deep and final kingdom of God.
In times of conflict we naturally pray for peace on earth. Yet in God’s righteous and final judgment, the problems of this life will quickly fall away. Our only concern then will be for our citizenship in His eternal kingdom in heaven.
P.R.A.Y. for Today
Praise God for His sovereignty over our world, and for His assured victory over evil; repent of any ear of evil you’ve had or any failure to trust Him; ask for His peace; yield to Him by offering encouragement to others who seem fearful or insecure.
- Shirley Dobson, Chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force
See You at the Pole™, the global day of student prayer, began in 1990 as a grass roots movement with ten students praying at their school. Twenty years later, millions pray on their campuses on the fourth Wednesday in September.
See You at the Pole™ is simply a prayer rally where students meet at the school flagpole before school to lift up their friends, families, teachers, school, and nation to God. It is a student-initiated, student-organized, and student-led event. However, parents, churches and families are encouraged to participate but to learn more, and to get involved, visit www.syatp.com
The See You at the Pole Story
A small group of teenagers in Burleson, Texas, came together for a DiscipleNow weekend in early 1990. They came seeking God and little did they know how powerfully He was about to move. On Saturday night their hearts were penetrated like never before, when they became broken before God and burdened for their friends. Compelled to pray, they drove to three different schools that night. Not knowing exactly what to do, they went to the school flagpoles and prayed for their friends, schools, and leaders. Those students had no idea how God would use their obedience.
God used what He did among those teenagers and others who were holding similar prayer meetings at their schools to birth a vision in the hearts of youth leaders across Texas. The vision was that students throughout Texas would follow these examples and meet at their school flagpoles to pray simultaneously. The challenge was named See You at the Pole™ at a brainstorming session during a meeting of key youth leaders. The vision was shared with 20,000 students in June 1990 at Reunion Arena in Dallas, Texas.
Only God had envisioned how many students would step up to the challenge. At 7:00 a.m. on September 12, 1990, more than 45,000 teenagers met at school flagpoles in four different states to pray before the start of school. Reports came into toll-free number for days after the first event.
A few months later, a group of youth ministers from all over the country gathered together for a national conference in Colorado. Many of them reported that their students had heard about the prayer movement in Texas and were equally burdened for their schools. No other events had been planned, but it was clear that students across the country would be creating their own national day of student prayer. There was no stopping them.
On September 11, 1991, at 7:00 a.m., an estimated one million students gathered at school flagpoles all over the country. From Boston, Massachusetts, to Los Angeles, California, from North Dakota to the tip of Texas, students came together to pray. Some sang, some read Scripture, but most importantly, they prayed. Like those first students, they prayed for their schools, for their friends, for their leaders, and for their country.
As in all great movements of prayer, See You at the Pole™ did not begin in the hearts of people. It began in the heart of God. God used the obedience of a small group of teenagers to ignite what has become an international movement of prayer among young people.
Since 1991, See You at the Pole™ has grown to God-sized proportions. Within the first few years, the movement began to spread to other nations through missionaries from the U.S. Now each year, more than 3 million students from all the world participate in See You at the Pole™. Students in more than 20 countries take part. In places like Canada, Korea, Japan, Turkey, and the Ivory Coast, students are responding to God and taking seriously the challenge to pray.
God is continuing to call His people to repentance and prayer. Countless inspiring testimonies of how He has used See You at the Pole™ to bring students to Christ and to change lives affirm God’s power to answer those who cry out to Him in humble dependence. Bible clubs, weekly prayer meetings, and other ministries have begun on campuses where students participated in See You at the Pole™. Get involved at www.syatp.com
September 14: Rosh Hashanah (Feast of Trumpets) (begins evening of September 13 - with a partial solar eclipse prior to the feast beginning) – this will end the seventh year of the Shemitah. This seventh year comes to an end on September 13, 2015 (elul 29), only to be immediately followed by a Jubilee (50th) year beginning September 14, 2015.
Jewish people still observe Rosh Hashanah as their New Year, which marks the beginning of what is alternatively called the "Ten Days of Repentance," or the "Days of Awe." These are the ten days of introspection and preparation for the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur)
September 23: Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) (begins evening of September 22).
September 28 – October 4: Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) (begins evening of September 27) A Blood Moon will occur on September 28 (final of the 4 blood moons during the Shemitah year).
See Exodus 23, Leviticus 23-25 and Deuteronomy 15-16 for references.
Universities facing lawsuits unless they remove their chaplains. Christian bakers, florists and photographers being fined and vilified in the press for their conservative views and practices. Soldiers court-martialed for promoting Biblical values. Restaurants owners confronted with denial of their lease because of their belief in traditional values.The religious symbols and traditions that have made our country a shining light in a dark world now disregarded and even disdained. First Amendment freedoms being challenged and eroded by militant anti-faith groups. What comes next?
Last year, the Family Research Council posted an expose titled, “Hostility to Religion: The Growing Threat to Religious Liberty in the United States.” It documents hundreds of additional examples of religious discrimination, including the suppression of religious expression in the public square, as well as in schools and universities, the censure of religious viewpoints regarding sexuality, and the suppression of religious expression on sexuality using nondiscrimination laws.
This raises questions for those of us who must chart a course through an increasingly hostile society.
- Where are the anchor points in a nation that seems to be adrift and no longer concerned or committed to our Judeo-Christian heritage?
- Should any citizen of the Unites States be forced by the government to violate his or her deeply held religious beliefs?
- How should we respond?
These once hypothetical discussions have now turned into harsh realities for people of faith, and they are serious matters of one’s conscience. Martin Luther, the leader of the Protestant Reformation, said, “To act against conscience is neither right nor safe.”
Lest you think the concept is only important to religious leaders, these are the words of Thomas Jefferson, principal author of the Declaration of Independence and touted by progressives for his alleged views on the separation of church and state:
“No provision in our Constitution ought to be dearer to man than that which protects the rights of conscience against the enterprises of the civil authority” (to New London Methodist, 1809).
“It behooves every man who values liberty of conscience for himself, to resist invasions of it in the case of others; or their case may, by change of circumstances, become his own. It behooves him, too, in his own case, to give no example of concession, betraying the common right of independent opinion, by answering questions of faith, which the laws have left between God and himself” (to Benjamin Rush, 1803).
“We are bound, you, I, and every one to make common cause, even with error itself, to maintain the common right of freedom of conscience” (to Edward Dowse, 1803).
The government’s role is to protect the Constitutional rights of individuals, not infringe upon them. Should a Jewish baker be forced to make a cake with a Nazi swastika? Or an atheist to do so with an image of the crucifixion? A gay person to inscribe, “God hates homosexuality?” Or a vegan restaurant owner forced to serve meals with meat? No! No! No! A thousand times, “No!” These may seem like insignificant concerns to some; however, the road is being methodically paved at an alarming rate. Thankfully, Members of the Congressional Prayer Caucus and the American Prayer Caucus Network are working tirelessly through their legislative leadership to ensure that citizens will not be trampled by those who seek to strip us of religious freedom.
Msgr. Charles Pope, pastor of a vibrant parish community in Washington, D.C. and Johnette Benkovic, Founder and President of Women of Grace, point out in a sobering article, that religious persecution takes place in five stages. What about Christianity in America? First, as the authors suggest, there are attempts to stereotype the targeted group – check! Second, there is a justification for hatred of the particular group – check! Third, the targeted group is marginalized in society – check! Fourth, the targeted group is criminalized, including their places of worship, businesses and educational institutions – check! Finally, there is outright persecution and even death – may! it never come to this, but are we ready to be fully engaged?
The days ahead are likely to require a shift from rhetoric to principled action. Are you prepared when it comes to your faith and conscience? May God grant us all the heart and determination of Joshua when he said, “…choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Josh. 24:15).
Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation
There is power in prayer. We grew up in a praying home, we’ve attended praying churches, and we’ve seen God answer countless specific prayers over the years.
When we were in high school our father and a few trusted friends believed God was leading them to launch a new Christian school in our area. To get started, of course, they needed desks, books, and the right location. But with little money, what they needed more than anything was faith. And prayer.
During those early days of the school, we watched how God rapidly guided and provided. A local church agreed to house the school and allow their facilities to be remodeled for the purpose. A local business donated free lumber. A volunteer ministry team from Tennessee showed up to help with construction. Within weeks, new classrooms and offices were completed. Another school called and offered books, desks, and chairs.
The timing was unbelievable. Soon we had students sitting in new classrooms, with books in their hands and teachers in front of them. Our father went on to serve as headmaster for two decades, watching the Lord continue to provide what was needed year after year. In the fall of 2014, the school celebrated its twenty-fifth anniversary, having impacted thousands of students and families for Christ through the years.
We witnessed answered prayers like these all the time. In 2002, following in our father’s footsteps, we were privileged to launch a Christian movie ministry at our church with no money, no professional experience, and no film school training. But we knew God could provide what we needed. And with the support of our church, we laid every need before Him in prayer. We had to write the scripts, find the right actors, secure the right equipment, pull off the entire production, and then obtain distribution.
God provided everything we needed at every level. Each of the five movies we’ve been part of producing has resulted from a long string of specifically answered prayers. We know we would have failed otherwise.
In our office we’ve created a “Wall of Remembrance.” Numerous framed pictures serve as visual reminders of God’s provision, each representing a clearly answered prayer. Among them is a picture of Alex as a young college student with a dream to make movies for the Lord. Another features a two-year-old orphan in Nanjing, China, that God guided Stephen and his wife to adopt. One shows a forklift on a train track that just happened to be nearby one of our movie sets, sitting idle behind a man’s house, right when we needed it. One other picture is of three brothers with their arms around each other, smiling, taken years after our father had prayed we would all be working together someday. Each picture represents a story of God’s faithfulness in our lives. It’s overwhelming to see them all together.
Incredible provision. Unbelievable direction. Impossible odds. The list goes on.
We know prayer works. We can’t deny it at this point. And we don’t want to. Answered prayers aren’t merely highly unlikely coincidences. They are fingerprints of a living, loving God who invites all of us to draw close to Him, the One who made us and “is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:27–28 nkjv).
We ask you to pray for us and for the film WAR ROOM as it opens on August 28th. We believe God has a mighty plan for how he will use this film and we pray that His will be done.
War Room - In Theaters August 28
America's faith leaders are endorsing Answered Prayers!
Dr. Jack Graham, 2015 Honorary Chairman of the National Day of Prayer, and many other faith leaders from across America are praising the inspirational new TLC series Answered Prayers presented by Roma Downey.
Don't miss the stories of hope and inspiration, Sunday at 1/12c on TLC, to experience the raw faith, hope and perseverance that can only come from the power of prayer!
Join the Facebook Answered Prayers community for updates on the new TLC series airing Sundays 1/12c. Together we can start a movement!
Follow along with the series while strengthening your own relationship with Christ by downloading the official prayer guide.