As I travel by air regularly, there are times when comments and jokes are exchanged with the people I sit next to. One such trick occasionally comes up: “This is your captain speaking; I’ve got good and bad news. The bad news is that we’re lost . . . I have no idea where we are. But the good news is . . . we’re having a perfect time!” This sounds much like where we are today.
Our Country is launching into a Presidential campaign that is already self-centered, divisive, painful, costly, and yet revealing. Candidates are promoting their ideas and themes for America. Each claims they have what it takes to move America forward. One says he will make America great again, while another claims that all our problems result from the other party. Then, a few pessimists in the group spoke nothing but negativity and told us we were right on the cliff’s edge and just one step away from total demise. However, the one common element amongst every candidate is that they can point the finger at who is at fault. You do not hear that responsibility and accountability start with self. Ownership is spoken in the future tense and not the present. Every promise for America is committed to tomorrow – not today. And what they did yesterday is presented in super-human proverbilies of accomplishments. Candidates are unwilling to take responsibility for the state we find this country in. There is a minority willing to address the truth of America’s erosion. Still, such statements are quickly passed over, minimized, and dismissed to sensationalize the derogatory comments that one candidate makes about another.
Amid all the discourse generated through and by the media, around kitchen tables, water fountains, in classrooms, and even from the pulpit, the one genuinely revealing fact that cannot be left out of the equation in the national debate for a better America is that we lack a clear spiritual direction for every citizen of this great country. It is easy to bash one side or the other; unfortunately, negativity is more contagious than the common cold. Finger-pointing and the blame game make headlines and are the laughs of late-night shows. However, amid this, we as Christians have been given a Godly hope and promise through His written Word, prophetic utterances, and prayer times.
The founding principles that brought value and made this nation stand above any other country worldwide were the Judeo-Christian principles, which, in plain talk, means – from the Bible and embedded in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution. This foundation of how citizens live their lives spells out that immoral and dishonest behavior is unacceptable in society. It certainly has been understood that we, as fallible individuals who have the propensity to fail from time to time, still comprehend that within the bedrock of our nation are unchanging principles that every citizen must live.
This means that in these challenging, exciting times, these uncertain times, we as ‘living vessels’ of the Holy Spirit have been called ‘for such a time as this.’ Although we are reaping the fruits of the family’s breakdown and the family’s foundation has been redefined, we are in the right place at the right time as a people of God. We are being called to fill the void in our communities with Christ-like compassion and to shut down this insidious vacuum sucking the very breath of morality, Godly principles, and values out of our homes and communities.
In his 2012 Presidential concession speech, Governor Mitt Romney’s opening remark was this: “This is a time of great challenges for America, and I pray that the president will be successful in guiding our nation.” He identified a fact and a need. And as the debates begin anew, we still have significant challenges, and we need to pray for our nation.
Before we voice our opinion, choose a candidate, or concede that we can’t bring about any form of change, we must pray! As Christians, this is the first and most critical step we must take the lead in: ‘ prayer.’ Many in Christianity are powerless because they do not pray. Consider the Word for a moment: “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 Chronicles 7:14)
The ridiculous name-calling and made-for-entertainment one-liners are all just distractions created to keep our eyes off the real issues and the current crisis that America finds itself in. The downward spiral and dismal outlook can be diminished by calling for genuine prayer. The call for prayer must move from the pulpit and into action. Establishing organized times of prayer, focused prayer, prayer lists, prayer calls, prayer tweets, Facebook prayers, and all-night prayer will open the ears of our Savior. We need to re-open the prayer rooms and dust off the prayer cloths. Like the tabernacle of old, this must be the first place we enter and spend time preparing. We then must challenge every child of God to create or re-establish prayer altars in their homes and then send our leadership into every one of those homes to bless such a holy place.
Governor Romney said, “We look to our pastors and priests and rabbis and counselors of all kinds to testify of the enduring principles upon which our society is built: Honesty, charity, integrity, and family.” America will never be great without our nation being rooted in the precepts of God. Our foundation is based upon Him. We can never be great again unless God is woven into the very fiber of every discussion. We will never be a great nation again if we do not humble ourselves, turn from our selfish nature, and repent of our godless ways. And it all begins with you and me. “…as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15). We must live the Word before we preach the Word. We must stand for the Word, fight on behalf of the Word, and sacrifice all for the Holy Word. We are the people, the called, the chosen generation that can call upon an awesome God that will heal our world, restore our homes, and reawaken our nation upon this nation’s founding Godly ideals. It is not the election results of 2016 that will restore America – it is our mandate, our call. The future is in our hands, and it begins with earnest prayer. Let our voices of prayer illuminate the majesty and power of our Savior. Let our intercessory prayer push back the enemy and wipe out every stronghold. It can be done, and it must be done. It can only be accomplished in and through each of us. Pray, pray, pray!