I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. (1 Tim. 2:1-2)
Based on this verse, Joshua Lambert has put together a challenge and encouragement to citizens of Bibb County, to pray daily for their leaders throughout the month of January 2016. He has created a prayer calendar with a very thorough listing of people, including administrators, mayors, commissioners, city councilmen and councilwomen, fire chiefs, and many others, divided among each of the thirty-one days of the month.
It is important to understand what this verse means for us, and how to implement it in each of our lives.
First, it means we must pray for our civil leaders in office who are not Christians. We must pray that God will save them and draw them to Himself, and that He will restrain them from wicked behavior.
Second, we must pray for our leaders who are Christians, who do serve the Lord. We must pray that God will continue to give them wisdom in their work and help them to understand what His Word says about their jobs. All too often, many aspects of our modern American political system go against what God says. We can’t simply pray that God will “bless our leaders in everything they do”; we have to pray that God will open their eyes to His Word, and that they will be obedient to Him!
Third, we must pray that if our leaders won’t obey the Lord, they will at least allow us to live our lives freely as faithful Christians, “in all godliness and honesty.” This also means that we must pray for God to restrain their disobedience to areas that do not interfere with our freedom to obey God both privately and publicly.
Fourth, this should also remind us to prayerfully examine our own lives and pray for God’s grace to increase in us. We must be reminded of our own duty to the Lord! Our prayer must be that God will draw us closer to Him, help us to understand His Word better, and make us more obedient to Him.
Another important point is found in James 5:16, “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” It is the prayer of the man, woman, or child who obeys, loves, and serves the Lord, that He hears.
This is a very important and needed project, and one that we would do well to take to heart. Bibb County has well over a hundred churches, so this should come very naturally to us!
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. (2 Chron. 7:14)
Humble prayer to God, from faithful people who are seeking His face, is one of the most important commitments we can make to heal our county and obey our Lord’s words in Matthew 28:18-20. Are you willing to commit to faithful prayer for our leaders?