Thursday, November 08, 2012

“We need your prayers.”

I lived in a predominantly Muslim nation in North Africa for half a decade. Each Sunday, I went to one of the nation’s few registered Protestant churches, where the government allowed foreigners (like myself) to gather. We willingly and intentionally prayed each Sunday for our host nation’s head of state, asking God: to bless him; to give him and his advisors wisdom to lead well; and to help him lead in a way that brought God glory. At one point, leaders from our church even met with the head of state and communicated the church’s commitment to praying for him weekly. I wasn’t there when the church leaders met with him, but I remember hearing that the head of state replied, “We need your prayers.” That sort of solidified our commitment and built in a bit of accountability to follow through with what we said we’d do.

Over the past few years of living in the United States, where I’ve regularly attended one church and freely visited several others, I’ve found this sort of intentional, public, weekly prayer rare, if it has happened at all. Admittedly, I haven’t made it a priority for myself, even though I intentionally spend daily time in prayer.

For followers of Christ, prayer for our leadership isn’t optional. It doesn’t depend on a leader’s walk of life or whether an election is coming up soon. It’s simply something the Bible urges us to do.

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