"Let us all work together to share the Good News, to push back the gates of hell from our state. Because there is no virus, no society ill, there is no election, no circumstance that God cannot handle."
If any quote summarizes the tone and feel of the South Florida Legislative Prayer Breakfast it was this.
Approximately 200 pastors and church leaders gathered for the May 25 event near Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, but the above quote did not come from a religious leader. Instead, Florida Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nuñez made the bold proclamation.
"This is the day the Lord has made," Nuñez, whose family immigrated to the U.S. from Cuba, jubilantly declared to a room full of hearty amens and raucous applause. "My parents came to this country in 1961.They came with little more than the clothes on their back. I recall them telling me stories of when things were spiraling out of control. But what was really the point for them of no return was when the situation became untenable as it was related to their faith."
Nuñez went on to describe how, during Cuba's socialist and communist revolution, leaders unleashed an all-out war on religion by shutting down churches, silencing and imprisoning religious leaders and even infiltrating the pews of the churches with revolutionaries whose goal was to completely remove God from the nation.
The lieutenant governor made it clear that the state of Florida remains dependent upon the grace and favor of the Lord. Imploring the faith leaders in the room, she said, "I ask for your prayers today that God would continue to shine His countenance upon us, and that the enemy's plans would not prosper."
Pastor Mario Bramnick, president of Latino Coalition for Israel and the South Florida Pastors Network, served as a co-organizer of the event.
He believes the state of Florida made massive gains leading up to the 2020 presidential election, saying that the conservative Latino voters were mobilized and were a huge part of determining the outcome of the state vote, saying, "Latino evangelicals brought in the vote for 2020."
He doesn't want to see the momentum that began last year lost, and desires to see those same Latino evangelicals engaged in 2021 and leading into the mid-term elections. However, politics isn't something he is particularly passionate about, or even likes for that matter.
"I hate politics," Bramnick said. "This isn't about politics. This is about a prophetic church rising. God is calling us today to take our place."
State Rep. John Snyder, R-Stuart, a rising star in Florida politics, addressed the assembly with the zeal of an evangelist: "God is on the move in the state of Florida from Pensacola down to Key West, from Jacksonville to Tampa. He is moving because we can see Him and we can feel Him."
Snyder also took time to highlight several pieces of legislation that have been signed or are planned to be signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis and have garnered national attention. He spoke of anti-riot legislation, social media protections for conservatives and Christians, and police reform measures as well as common-sense stances such as banning biological boys from playing girls sports.
"Now is not the time to raise the white flag," Snyder said. "Now is the time to keep fighting, keep praying and stay engaged."
After presentations by several speakers and several focused times of prayer, Bramnick called the group's attention back to moving forward and taking action.
"We are in a war for the soul of this nation," he said. "Our battle is between freedom and tyranny, and I declare that the outcome will be determined by Jesus Christ. It's time to contend for freedom."
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