What is really happening in Washington, D.C.? Russian collusion? Instability?
The answer would be prayer.
I just returned from Washington, D.C., after attending the National Prayer Breakfast. On this trip and previous trips over the last year I have heard the following statement several times from those who work there—some who work directly for the president. "We haven't seen prayer and Bible study happening like this ever before! It is happening everywhere."
That shouldn't surprise us though, should it? Haven't we been praying for our nation and for President Trump? Let me tell you, things are happening.
Even as I flew into the city, it was clear the atmosphere had literally changed since I was last there in October. You can feel it. Why? I believe because of the prayers of the church.
Mercedes Schlapp, President Trump's senior adviser for strategic communications stated last year, "Prayer and Bible studies are happening all over the city of D.C. now. It has become a normal part of this administration. All Cabinet meetings start with prayer, as do the meetings with the Joint Chiefs of Staff."
"You know Trump did not grow up in church and doesn't know formal religious speak," she continued. "So at the Cabinet meetings (his first year in office) when he wanted to start with prayer, he would ask someone to say 'grace.' His terminology might have been off, but they all understood his meaning, and it endeared them to him. They like him personally, and it shows."
This year, as I listened to President Trump share at the National Prayer Breakfast (Feb. 7), it was different than last year. The spiritual growth that has taken place in him is apparent. Do you remember when he was running for office, and he would give a Scripture reference and fumble it? Or quote a Scripture and it wasn't exactly correct? Last year at the Prayer Breakfast, his sincerity and desire to stand with the Christian community were obvious. However, he had only been in office a few weeks and was a very new believer. He shared Scriptures, but you could tell, it was all new to him.
Not this year.
Yes, he was probably reading from a teleprompter, but he shared several scriptures and they flowed out of him not as from a speech, but from the heart. He was familiar with them. He knew them.
As singer/songwriter Chris Tomlin sang, "Good, Good Father," I watched the president closely. His face relaxed (you know he always looks intense, in my opinion) and was filled with peace. Seated, he swayed back and forth in his seat with the music, worshipping. He didn't raise his hands in worship (no one at the head tables did) but it wouldn't have surprised me if he had. He was worshipping and it was evident.
I know there are a lot of questions regarding this president—and lots of rage—but here are some important facts:
∙ Although he would have previously called himself a "nominal" Christian, somewhere either during his campaign or just after his election, he sincerely gave his heart to the Lord.
∙ Ιmmediately after his inauguration, as he was headed to the next event, he turned to Mike Pence and said, "Will you pray for me?" The vice president responded, "I have already been praying for you." "No, I mean right now," President Trump replied.
- President Trump and Vice-President Pence regularly meet together in the Oval Office to start their day in prayer.
∙ The president reads the prayers and encouraging words that are sent to him, and he prays over them as well.
∙ He has surrounded himself with a Christian advisory board of godly men and women and asks for their counsel on a regular basis. And he listens to them!
∙ He is very simply, sincere about God, his new (or renewed) Christian faith and preserving the religious liberties in our country—especially for Christians.
While some may see this as an advertisement for President Trump, it is not. It is simply sharing what I have personally observed or learned from people who are working directly with him. My only regret is that I did not pray as diligently for President Obama or previous administrations. What if we had all prayed to the same degree as most of us are now praying?
Though we can't undo the past, we can learn from it and recognize we now have a president who is pressing ahead with an agenda to honor God, preserve life, and protect our religious liberty and our nation.
If President Trump enrages you, that's all the more reason to pray for him. Our nation has been divided. The church has been divided over this issue. This should not be, because our mandate from Scripture is the same for all of us in 1 Timothy 2:1-2, which says, "Therefore I exhort first of all that you make supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings for everyone, for kings and for all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceful life in all godliness and honesty."
How Can We Pray?
- For wisdom and godly insight for our leaders.
"For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, pleasing to all, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God" (Col. 1:9-10).
- That God will surround them with godly counsel and that any ungodly counsel will be removed.
Lord, surround our president with godly counsel, for where there is no counsel, the people fall; but in the multitude of counselors there is safety (see Prov. 11:14).
- That they will continue to grow in the knowledge of God and that it will become evident in their words.
Lord, we pray our leaders will grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (see 2 Pet. 3:18).
- Those in our State Department who are standing in faith and prayer to see unity and breakthrough have asked that we pray for important legislation and new appointees, which have been held up, to move ahead. Eighty percent of those working at the State Department are holdovers from the last administration. We need the new appointees to be confirmed now and for this blockage to be removed.
Lord, we pray that you would build up, build up, prepare the way, take up every stumbling block out of the way of Your people (see Isa. 57:14).
- For the approval of judges/justices whose nominations have been intentionally held up. False accusations have been made to prevent their appointment and remove them from the list. We need to pray that there would be a speedy process to finalize the appointment of God-fearing judges. Pray that they would be seated and able to begin work.
No weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment, you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their vindication is from Me, says the Lord (Is 54:17).
Karen Hardin is an intercessor, author, minister and literary agent. She is called to exhort, encourage and help raise up the remnant. She desires to empower those who have grown weary so they can reposition to walk in identity and destiny. Her work has appeared in USA Today, World Net Daily, Crosswalk.com, Charisma, CBN.com, The Elijah List and so on. For additional information, you may contact her at prioritypr.org or karenhardin.com.
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