Prayer is much more than something we say. It’s a conversation and a movement. It’s global. It’s God everywhere in all of our lives—working the miraculous and making known to us His plans.
God awoke me in the night with words. They came after months of intentional, yet tiring prayer. God unveiled His vision for a new kind of economic change. When He finished speaking, I said, “That would be a new economy.” He said, “It’s my economy.” And so Jesus’ Economy came to be.
Jesus' Economy creates jobs and churches in the developing world, as well as meets basic needs—resulting in a new global, spiritual and physical economy for those that need it most. To create jobs and churches in the developing world, we provide an online, fair trade store and initiate holistic, transformation projects. Each project we do lasts three to five years, and is focused on a single region.
Since the night of the vision, prayer is—more than ever—the center. Without prayer, Jesus’ Economy wouldn’t exist. You see, I have a very busy day job too, directing Christian publishing efforts. And my wife, Kalene, volunteers full time for Jesus’ Economy. Each time it feels like too much, we pray, and God brings along the right person at the right time. (One example is John Bornschein, Vice Chairman and Executive Director of the National Day of Prayer joining Jesus’ Economy’s Board of Directors.)
But we’re praying for something much larger than overcoming our own hurdles: We’re praying that the developing world, where people are desperately struggling to make a living, would be transformed physically and spiritually. We’re praying that the gospel would reach every person who is yet to hear the name of Jesus. And it’s happening.
Today, through our online fair trade shop, we’re helping talented artisans and their families earn a living—in Kenya, Haiti, Uganda, and Zambia. Not only are the artisans we feature earning a fair wage from our purchases, many other non-profits who work with them are being funded; we’re putting any additional profit into church grants, microloans, meeting basic needs, and a little into our operations.
In addition, we just announced our first holistic transformation project titled "Renew Bihar, India." In Bihar, India—one of the most impoverished places in the world, where few have heard the name of Jesus—we will simultaneously fund church grants, microloans, and meet needs in one developing community. Partnering with the people of Bihar, we will renew hope, hearts, and homes.
Jesus’ Economy proves to me how audacious our Lord is. He does the impossible.
In our lifetimes, we can alleviate poverty in a sustainable way and ensure everyone has access to saving message of Jesus. I believe this to be true because I know Jesus and have seen Him work. Partner with us to create jobs and churches--visit JesusEconomy.org to learn more.
- John Barry, President of Jesus' Economy
A first century Hebrew walks alone on a hot afternoon staff in hand. His shoulders are stooped, sandals covered with dirt, tunic stained with sweat. But he doesn’t stop to rest. He has pressing business in the city.
He veers off the road into a field, seeing a shortcut, the owner won’t mind- travelers are permitted this courtesy. The field is uneven. To keep his balance he thrusts his staff into the dirt. Thunk, the staff strikes something hard. He stops, wipes his brow, and pokes again. Thunk, something’s under there, and it’s not a rock.
The weary traveler tells himself that he can’t afford to linger. But his curiosity won’t let him go. He jabs at the ground. Something reflects a sliver of sunlight. He drops to his knees and starts digging.
Five minutes later, he’s uncovered it-a case fringed in gold. By the looks of it, it’s been there for decades. Heart racing, he pries off the rusty lock and opens the lid.
Gold coins! Jewelry! Precious stones of every color! A treasure more valuable than anything he’s ever imagined.
Hands shaking, the traveler inspects the coins, issued in Rome over seventy years ago. Some wealthy man must have buried the case and died suddenly, the secret of the treasure’s dying with him. There is no homestead nearby. Surely the current landowner has no idea that the treasure’s here.
The traveler closes the lid, buries the chest, and marks the spot. He turns around, heading home- only now he’s not plodding. He’s skipping like a little boy, smiling broadly.
What a find! Unbelievable! I’ve got to have that treasure! But I can’t just take it- that would be stealing. Whoever owns the field owns what’s in it. But how can I afford to buy it? I’ll sell my farm… and crops… all my tools… my prize oxen. Yes, if I sell everything, that should be enough!
From the moment of his discovery, the traveler’s life changes. The treasure captures his imagination, becomes the stuff of his dreams. It’s his reference point, his new center of gravity. The traveler takes every new step with this treasure in mind. He experiences a paradigm shift.
The story is captured by Jesus in a single verse: “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all that he had and bought that field” (Matthew 13:44).
The Treasure Principle
The parable of hidden treasure is one of many references Jesus made to money and possessions. In fact, 15 percent of everything Christ said relates to this topic- more than His teachings on heaven and hell combined.
Why did Jesus put such an emphasis on money and possessions? Because there’s a fundamental connection between our spiritual lives and how we think about and handle money. We may try to divorce our faith and our finances, but God sees them as inseparable.
In Matthew 6, Jesus fully unveils the foundation of what I call the Treasure Principle: “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven” (vv.19-20).
Why? Because earthly treasures are bad? No. Because they won’t last.
But when Jesus warns us not to store up treasures on earth, it’s not just because wealth might be lost; it’s because wealth will always be lost. Either it leaves us while we live, or we leave it when we die. No exceptions.
Imagine you’re alive at the end of the Civil War. You’re living in the South, but you are a Northerner. You plan to move home as soon as the war is over. While in the South, you’ve accumulated lots of Confederate currency. Now, suppose you know for a fact that the North is going to win the war and that the end is imminent. What will you do with your Confederate money?
If you’re smart, there’s only one answer. You should immediately cash in your Confederate currency for U.S. currency- the only money that will have value once the war is over. Keep only enough Confederate currency to meet your short-term needs.
As a Christian, you have inside knowledge of an eventual worldwide upheaval caused by Christ’s return. This is the ultimate insider trading tip: Earth’s currency will become worthless when Christ returns- or when you die, whichever comes first. (And either event could happen at any time.)
Investment experts known as market timers read signs that the stock market is about to take a downward turn, then recommend switching funds immediately into more dependable vehicles such as money markets, treasury bills, or certificates of deposit.
Jesus functions here as the foremost market timer. He tells us to once and for all switch investment vehicles. He instructs us to transfer our funds from earth (which is volatile and ready to take a permanent dive) to heaven (which is totally dependable, is insured by God Himself, and is coming soon to forever replace earth’s economy). Christ’s financial forecast for earth is bleak- but He’s unreservedly bullish about investing in heaven, where every market indicator is eternally positive!
There’s nothing wrong with Confederate money, as long as you understand its limits. Realizing that its value is temporary should radically affect your investment strategy to accumulate vast earthly treasures that you can’t possibly hold onto for long is equivalent to stockpiling Confederate money even though you know it’s about to become worthless. According to Jesus, storing up earthly treasures isn’t simply wrong. It’s just plain stupid.
A Treasure Mentality
Jesus doesn’t just tell us where not to put our treasures. He also gives the best investment advice you’ll ever hear: “Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven” (Matthew 6:20).
If you stopped reading too soon, you would have thought that Christ was against our storing up treasures for ourselves. No. He’s all for it! In fact, He commands it. Jesus has a treasure mentality. He wants us to store up treasures. He’s just telling us to stop storing them in the wrong places and start storing them in the right place!
“Store up for yourselves.” Doesn’t it seem strange that Jesus commands us to do what’s in our own best interests? Wouldn’t that be selfish? No. God expects and commands us to act out of enlightened self-interest. He wants us to live to His glory, but what is to His glory is always for our good.
Jesus is talking about deferred gratification. The man who finds the treasure in the field pays a high price now by giving up all he has- but soon he’ll gain a fabulous treasure. As long as his eye is on that treasure, he makes his short-term sacrifices with joy. The joy is present, so the gratification isn’t entirely deferred. Present joy comes from anticipating future joy.
“Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven.” Why? Because its right? Not just that, but because it’s smart. Because such treasures will last. Jesus argues from the bottom line. It’s not an emotional appeal; it’s a logical one: Invest in what has lasting value.
You’ll never see a hearse pulling a U-Haul. Why? Because you can’t take it with you (Psalm 49:16-17). If that point is clear in your mind, you’re ready to hear the secret of the Treasure Principle.
The Treasure Revolution
Jesus takes that profound truth” You can’t take it with you” and adds a stunning qualification. By telling us to store up treasures for ourselves in heaven, He gives us a breathtaking corollary: You can’t take it with you- but you can send it on ahead.
Suppose I offer you one thousand dollars today to spend however you want. Not a bad deal. But suppose I give you a choice- you can either have that one thousand dollars today, or you can have ten million more every year after that.
Only a fool would take the thousand dollars today. Yet that’s what we do whenever we grab onto something that will last for only a moment, forgoing something far more valuable that we could enjoy later for much longer.
Of course, there are many good things God wants us to do with money that don’t involve giving it away. It is essential, for instance, that we provide for our family’s basic material needs (1 Timothy 5:8). But these good things are only a beginning. The money God entrusts to us here on earth is eternal investment capital. Every day is an opportunity to buy up more shares in His kingdom.
You can’t take it with you, but you can send it on ahead. It’s a revolutionary concept. If you embrace it, I guarantee it will change your life. As you store up heavenly treasures, you’ll gain an everlasting version of what that man found in the treasure hidden in the field.
My Treasure Covenant
- I will affirm God’s full ownership of me in everything entrusted to me.
- I will set aside the first fruits- at least ten percent- of every wage and gift I receive as holy and belonging exclusively to the Lord.
- Out of the remaining treasures God entrusts to me, I will seek to make generous freewill gifts.
- I will ask God to teach me to give sacrificially to His purposes, including helping the poor and reaching the lost.
- Recognizing that I cannot take earthly treasures from this world, I will lay them up as heavenly treasures- for Christ’s glory and for eternal good for others and myself.
- I will ask God to show me how to lead others to the present joy and future reward of the Treasure Principle.
- Randy Alcorn
As we draw closer to the end of the year - please prayerfully consider supporting our ministry cause with a donation that will be an investment into eternity. Millions are praying as a result of our work and thousands more are learning how to pray and grow deeper in their walk with Jesus Christ. May God bless you!
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Lord of the Universe. Lord of this planet. Lord of the nations. Lord of our hearts. On this National Day of Prayer, we look to You...
In the darkness, You are our Light.
In the storm, You are our Anchor.
In our weakness, You are our Strength. In our grief, You are our Comfort.
In our despair, You are our Hope.
In our confusion, You are our Wisdom. In time of terrorism, You are our Shield. In time of war, You are our Peace.
In times of uncertainty, You are the Rock on which we stand.
We make our prayer to You using the words of the prophet Daniel:
O Lord, You are the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant of love with those who love Him and keep His commandments. You are merciful and forgiving. You are righteous, but this day we are covered with shame because we have sinned against You, and done wrong. We have turned away from Your commands and principles. We have turned away from You.
Yet You have promised in 2 Chronicles 7, that if we--a people identified with You--would humble ourselves, pray, seek Your face, and turn from our wicked ways, then You would hear our prayer, forgive our sin and heal our land.
So we choose to stop pointing our finger at the sins of others, and examine our own hearts and lives. We choose to acknowledge our own sin--our neglect and defiance and ignorance and even rejection of You. This day we choose to repent.
In response to our heartfelt repentance, God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Father of Jesus Christ, in keeping with all Your righteous acts and according to Your promise, turn away Your anger and Your wrath from the United States of America. Hear the prayers and petitions offered to You on this National Day of Prayer, as we give You our full attention. Give ear, our God, and hear; open Your eyes and see. We do not make requests of You because we are righteous, but because of Your great mercy.
For the glory of Your Name hear our prayer, forgive our sin, and heal our land.
We ask this in the name of Your Son Jesus Christ who offers us salvation from Your judgment, forgiveness for our sin, and reconciliation with You through His own blood shed on the Cross. Amen.
2014 National Prayer, by Anne Graham Lotz
On a small ranch in Wyoming a man went out to protect his cattle from an approaching tornado as his wife and child looked on. With a sudden turn, the tornado moved directly toward him. His wife excitedly turned to their son and said, “Johnny, quick! Get on your knees and pray!” Johnny instantly fell to his knees and began to say: “Now I lay me down to sleep…” It was the only thing he had ever said to God! This fictitious story should remind us of the importance of teaching our children to pray. Without proper understanding, they cannot pray effectively. Many of them learn to recite a model, but don’t comprehend how to communicate with Jesus Christ. We need to help them realize that God desires a relationship with them and it is not just our children who need to understand the power of prayer. The foundation of nations is built on prayer, therefore we as adults need to learn how to pray for our church – our land – is need of revival as perhaps never before and only in prayer will we find restoration and revelation.
Relationship is the core of effective 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 young 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.
Jesus Christ wants a relationship with us that is built on time spent in His presence and through reading His Word. On a personal level, we can speak to Him about anything and everything. And yet, although prayer is simple, its principles must be learned. Even the disciples asked their Master to teach them to pray.
There is no underestimating the importance of prayer in a family or its influence and vital importance in our nation. I feel this very strongly because it was so decidedly absent from my own early childhood experience. The little girl that I once was grew up in a troubled home where daily prayers were unknown and the sounds of joyful praise were never heard. I’m aware of what family-centered spiritual training can mean to a child because I “discovered” it for myself when I was about eight years old. What a contrast to the rich spiritual heritage of my husband’s family! He has often told me how his grandmother used to gather the six children around her for daily devotions. She prayed, “Lord, it is my most urgent request that each of these children will come to know You personally. If one of them fails to make that commitment, it would have been better that I never had been born.” This is the priority she gave to her spiritual responsibility. Her prayers made such an impression on Jim’s dad that he referred to them throughout his life. This is the example our children need to see in us. But it is more than a model. Prayer and reverence for God must permeate every aspect of our lives and become a natural part of our life.
We need to learn how to become a people of prayer once again. Then and only then will God hear us from heaven and restore and heal our land. This past weekend, we held a 27-hour concert of prayer with over 60 of the foremost teachers on prayer. If your schedule allows, please take time now to view the many sessions of prayer and prayer teaching that took place. Together, they challenged, inspired and motivate us to be united as one voice as perhaps never before. Click here to watch now
- Shirley Dobson, Chairman
27-Hour Global Prayer Gathering to Awaken Masses Out of Prayer Coma
Forget the pastoral settings for prayer featuring rolling meadows and fragrant flowers. The National Day of Prayer Task Force Vice Chairman John Bornschein unveils prayer for what it really is—a powerful weapon to be wielded in spiritual warfare. As a speaker at the upcoming PrayerCast LIVE 2013, John joins more than 60 of the foremost teachers on prayer in a crusade to shake Americans out of the trenches and onto the front line of battle—against the destructive forces dismantling our nation.
On October 18-19, the Jericho Center will host PrayerCast LIVE 2013 and they anticipate more than 30,000 people will tune in live for one of the largest broadcast concerts of prayer ever captured on camera. With special guests like Joni Eareckson Tada, Dr. Bruce Wilkinson, and Shirley Dobson, featuring video feeds from Beth Moore, Franklin Graham, Dr. David Jeremiah, Bishop Harry Jackson, Greg Laurie and many more, this group sets out to lay aside many common misperceptions about prayer and set the record—and America—straight. Bornschein, a frequent guest on Dr. James Dobson’s “Family Talk” radio program, is not afraid to sound the battle cry and take the Church through spiritual boot camp. And he has never witnessed a more pressing time for prayer, as he sees the Christian underpinnings of our country being attacked from every side.
“Given the troubling times facing our country, I remain convinced that heartfelt and persistent prayer have never been more crucial,” Bornschein contends. “It is only through the humble intercession of God’s people and His gracious response that we will see healing and revival. As culture continues to crumble by casting out truth for moral relativism (godlessness and lawlessness), we must realize that the Church is a stronghold in this world. We are lifting the standard on the battlefield, and we must stand firm.”
Bornschein, who co-hosts the weekly podcast Pray for America and serves as the senior pastor of Calvary Fellowship Fountain Valley church, argues that even though all Americans are effected by attacks on the Christian foundation of society, most sit quietly on the sidelines while laying down their most powerful weapon—prayer.
“The challenge is that many in the Church don’t know how to pray,” Bornschein insists. “They think they do, but in reality, they don’t understand the mountain-moving power of prayer—a relationship so deep and pure with Almighty God that an audacious faith is unleashed with world transformational power. We are content with mediocrity in our walk with the Lord and thus depriving ourselves of the privilege of being a part of eternal and boundless impact. That is why I am joining my esteemed colleagues at PrayerCast LIVE 2013 for the purpose of opening eyes to the battle for the minds of men and how to be effective on the front line through prayer.”
Leaving their fatigues in the closet, many Americans feel stripped of their power and swamped when facing their daily battles without a sufficient covering of prayer.
“Christians, especially men, often lump prayer into the category of the intangibles and wield it as a last resort when confronted with difficult situations,” Bornschein explained. “Far too often, it has to be a really difficult situation to merit a little humility to push us to our knees. It is amazing how we struggle with the concept of prayer. We think we are experiencing all that prayer has to offer with our token mealtime utterings or at the bedside blessing with our children as we quote lines from passed-down traditions.”
According to Bornschein, this breakdown is not only experienced in the home.
“Even in seminary, prayer is not a critical focus,” Bornschein adds. “We think too little of the most powerful resource in our arsenal. But we don’t do it intentionally. We are ignorant of the application and thirsty to experience the fullness of relationship with the Almighty. I am convinced that this conference will open eyes and transform the Christian perspective of this multi-dimensional conversation. It will revolutionize the Church by transforming the hearts and minds of the family,” Bornschein asserts. “Husbands and wives will see generational impact as never before, and stagnant minds will be unlocked and empowered with audacious faith. America needs your prayers, now more than ever,” Bornschein proclaimed. “We continue to face unabated moral decline, economic downfall, military conflict in the Middle East and the ever-increasing assaults against our religious liberty. Given these urgent concerns, it’s imperative that we remain on our knees in contrite supplication for the United States.”
This exhortation to prayer is a call for masses to engage in all-out spiritual warfare.
“In my role with the National Day of prayer, I have witnessed the growth of an amazing movement that is spreading across the world,” continued Bornschein. “We are privileged to fan the flame of this global revival that is capturing the hearts of millions of people. This coming year, we fully expect to see thousands of events, as many as 40,000 or more, from coast to coast with people fasting and praying on the first Thursday of May. Our theme this year is “One Voice United in Prayer” and Anne Graham Lotz is our honorary chairman. Our goal is to see 250,000 new people engaged in prayer and thousands more making a commitment for Christ.”
Beginning as a tradition back in 1789, the National Day of Prayer was officially established as an annual event by U.S. Congress six decades ago, seeing untold millions of Americans coming together every year to humbly call upon God. Despite numerous attempts in recent years to declare the NDoP unconstitutional by atheist organizations such as the Freedom From Religion Foundation, it continues to stand as a beacon of light, protection and hope for a nation blessed with a unique Christian foundation.
“The need for prayer must be continually impressed in our communities and throughout our nation if we are to preserve the biblical heritage that has enabled America to become great,” Bornschein concludes, reminding America to put on their prayer armor and weaponry through joining him on The Front Line. “It will lead to a revitalization and renewal of our commitment to Christ that will change the way we live and interact within our spheres of influence. It is a journey I encourage all to experience. We need to learn how to become a people of prayer once again. Then and only then will God hear us from heaven and heal our land. At PrayerCast LIVE 2013 we are going to learn how to pray in a way that forever shapes our perspectives and guides the course of history. “
If you want to learn more about viewing or attending this free event, then visit www.PrayerCastLive.com
The Topic PUBLIC PRAYER
For many, praying is an instinctive, soul-deep reaction to times of great joy, deep distress, and crushing grief. Prayer can also guide and focus us in our daily lives, as we seek direction, comfort and blessing for the challenges that lay before us. Indeed for many, prayer permeates all aspects of life.
In the midst of the ongoing debate over the proper intersection of “church and state,” our own government leaders invoke the Almighty before launching a day’s legislative work, inaugurating a governor or president, or speaking to families reeling from natural disasters and brutal terrorist attacks.
America’s Founding Fathers recognized how crucial religious liberty is to our culture, and wove religious protections into our laws and government. They also took time to pray together publicly as they set about writing our Constitution.
Our legacy of prayer, and the very legal protections the Founding Fathers secured, is at risk. Town of Greece v. Galloway, an Alliance Defending Freedom case currently pending before the Supreme Court of the United States, asks the key question – will our government retain our Founding Fathers’ respect for public prayer?
The Case Town of Greece v. Galloway
The town council of Greece, New York has long opened its sessions with an invocation. Many volunteers from the community have chosen to pray. The invitation has been opened to everyone.
However Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU), claimed a “religious imbalance” and filed a lawsuit against the town in 2008. The AU’s clients took offense at the way people prayed. In an unfortunate opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that, because Greece is made up predominantly of Christians, it may need to censor prayers or import others from outside the community.
AU and its legal allies want to eliminate public prayer or render those prayers meaningless by requiring the government to censor any language that could “offend someone,” including praying in Jesus’s name or to the God of David.
Alliance Defending Freedom together with lead counsel Thomas G. Hungar of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP are representing the Town of Greece in this lawsuit.
What's At Stake
- The continuation of the public prayer tradition that began with our Founding Fathers.
- The freedom of community volunteers to pray according to their faith in a public setting without censorship.
- The preservation of freedom of speech in the face of one "offended" person’s demands for censorship.
- The foundational American principle of freedom of religion.
Click here to make your voice heard
Dr. James and Shirley Dobson have just celebrated their 53rd Wedding Anniversary! As you may know, Mrs. Shirley Dobson has also served as the Chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force since 1991.
Please help us congratulate the happy couple.
It is time to get on our knees before Almighty God for ourselves, for our community and for our nation. Here at the National Day of Prayer Task Force, we believe in the power of prayer and we want to encourage you to prayerfully consider joining with us in the 40-Day Prayer Covenant.
The 40-Day Prayer Covenant goes thru eight biblical themes that relate to your relationship with God and others. It is a daily catalyst for charging your awareness of God’s love through you to impact your spheres of influence.
The Prayer Covenant transforms lives because it is a process and a prayer anchored in the Scriptures and is in direct obedience to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission. The team at the 40-day Prayer Covenant welcomes you into a movement we pray will result in an awakening to Jesus Christ as Lord, for his Kingdom and his glory!
To learn more and to get started, visit www.theprayercovenant.org
I bring you good news from the front lines and also a matter of great importance.
On May 31, just a few weeks after the largest National Day of Prayer (NDP) in U.S. history, the NDP Task Force set out on a 23,000 mile, 300-city, 100-day, 37-state tour in a Pray for America wrapped bus to travel community to community, church to church, encouraging all to remain in fervent prayer over our nation (Acts 18:23).
The stories of hope and transformation are humbling. We have watched families reunited, fathers crying with their children asking for forgiveness, children coming to know the Lord Jesus as their Savior, addicts falling to the ground in repentance and even church leaders re-energized to continue serving on the front lines. There are few words to encompass or adequately describe the transformation that has occurred. Indeed, every day the wheels have turned under the bus, we have called them miracle miles as the next stop is always filled with opportunity and praise. We have served in soup kitchens, witnessed out in front of courthouses, led more than 93 people to the Lord, and mobilized thousands to intercede for our nation and we can’t stop now! Of all my years here at the National Day of Prayer Task Force, this has been one of the most impactful mission efforts we have ever undertaken and it is because of the generous support of friends like you that we have been able to make a difference in our nation today and for generations to come.
At one stop in Connecticut we ended up worshiping with three churches for over 14 hours straight. At another stop in Buffalo, NY, we set-up tents for prayer with free resources and although it poured rain for much of the morning, lines circled the building with people just praising God. It was as if the whole central district just closed up shop and all came out for prayer in the heart of the city despite the weather. Every single day has been like this so if you are just hearing about the Pray for America Bus Tour for the first time, please take a moment and read the updates at Commit2pray.com. We know you will be blessed and encouraged just as we are.
We have traveled more than 5,400 miles to 46 cities, while ministering directly to more than 16,940 people on the road and another 1,920,213 people who have followed closely online.
If you have ever wanted to be a part of life-transforming ministry, then this is your chance. I am asking you to stand with us and help us raise the additional funds needed to continue in this ministry to our nation to bring light into the dark places and spread the love of Jesus Christ. 100% of every gift will go directly to this ministry cause. I am not asking you to help us pay salaries or pay the utilities. Rather, every dollar is going to keep us on the road. There is a fresh wind blowing across the nation as God is raising up His church for such a time as this! It is our prayer that we can continue to travel the nation but we need your help. It is our goal to cover at least 37 states (if not more) and we need to raise an additional $32,400 to make sure we can effectively reach out across the Midwest, West Coast and Southern states. View the current schedule at www.Commit2Pray.com. Click here to donate now.
Please prayerfully consider standing with us in this Pray for America mission and if you have a church or location in mind for our next stop, don’t hesitate to let us know.
May God bless you and may God bless America!
By David Barton
On July 2, 1776, Congress voted to approve a complete separation from Great Britain. Two days afterwards – July 4th – the early draft of the Declaration of Independence was signed, albeit by only two individuals at that time: John Hancock, President of Congress, and Charles Thompson, Secretary of Congress. Four days later, on July 8, members of Congress took that document and read it aloud from the steps of Independence Hall, proclaiming it to the city of Philadelphia, after which the Liberty Bell was rung. The inscription around the top of that bell, Leviticus 25:10, was most appropriate for the occasion: “Proclaim liberty throughout the land and to all the inhabitants thereof.”
To see the turmoil in other nations, their struggles and multiple revolutions, and yet to see the stability and blessings that we have here in America, we may ask how has this been achieved? What was the basis of American Independence? John Adams said “The general principles on which the Fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity.” Perhaps the clearest identification of the spirit of the American Revolution was given by John Adams in a letter to Abigail the day after Congress approved the Declaration. He wrote her two letters on that day; the first was short and concise, jubilant that the Declaration had been approved. The second was much longer and more pensive, giving serious consideration to what had been done that day. Adams cautiously noted: “This day will be the most memorable epic in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival.”
It is amazing that on the very day they approved the Declaration, Adams was already foreseeing that their actions would be celebrated by future generations. Adams contemplated whether it would be proper to hold such celebrations, but then concluded that the day should be commemorated – but in a particular manner and with a specific spirit. As he told Abigail: “It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.”
John Adams believed that the Fourth of July should become a religious holiday – a day when we remembered God's hand in deliverance and a day of religious activities when we committed ourselves to Him in “solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.” Such was the spirit of the American Revolution as seen through the eyes of those who led it, evidenced even further in the words of John Quincy Adams, one who was deeply involved in the activities of the Revolution.
According to John Quincy Adams, Christmas and the Fourth of July were intrinsically connected. On the Fourth of July, the Founders simply took the precepts of Christ, who came into the world through His birth (Christmas) and incorporated those principles into civil government.
Have you ever considered what it meant for those 56 men – an eclectic group of ministers, businessmen, teachers, university professors, sailors, captains, farmers – to sign the Declaration of Independence? This was a contract that began with the reasons for the separation from Great Britain and closed in the final paragraph stating “And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.” These men took this pledge seriously and it cost them greatly. When Samuel Adams signed the Declaration, he said, “We have this day restored the Sovereign to whom all men ought to be obedient. He reigns in heaven and from the rising to the setting of the sun, let His kingdom come.”
The spiritual emphasis manifested so often by the Americans during the Revolution caused one Crown-appointed British governor to write to Great Britain complaining that: “If you ask an American who is his master, he'll tell you he has none. And he has no governor but Jesus Christ.” This was boldly declared with not one but sixteen Congressional proclamations for national days of prayer and fasting throughout the Revolution.
Preserving American liberty depends first upon our understanding the foundations on which this great country was built and then preserving the principles on which it was founded. Let's not let the purpose for which we were established be forgotten. The Founding Fathers have passed us a torch; let's not let it go out.