In these days of much concern regarding our nation, the world, and particularly, our political leaders, a particular neglect in my life comes to mind.
“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. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior” (I Timothy 2:1-3).
I find politics and governance very interesting, but sadly, not interesting enough to pray often enough for those who lead us. Indeed, if I had prayed - in obedience to the clear command of Scripture - as often as I have complained, my heart would be far more filled with the peace of Christ, and I might well have had the impact upon our leaders that a believer’s prayer makes possible.
This is not to say that it is wrong to be troubled by what we perceive to be questionable or faulty governance, or to even voice our concerns. The Bible calls us to “abhor that which is evil” (Romans 12:9). It is to say, however, that a quiver full of complaints rather than a quiver full of intercessions reveals a lack of response to the truth of God’s involvement in all things whereby He “worketh all things after the counsel of His own will” (Ephesians 1:11). More importantly, as in my case, failure to consistently pray for “all that are in authority” involves direct disobedience to the command of Scripture.
We can rest our hearts in the truth that history is His Story. Nothing catches our Heavenly Father by surprise, He is prepared for every political contingency, and He guards our hearts even if He allows the wicked to jeopardize the outer courts of our dwelling. Who can say what He might do if we empty our quiver of complaints in order to fill it with prayers? I thank the Lord personally for His patience and mercy with the problem child that I am, and I close this consideration to find that place of prayer “for kings, and for all that are in authority.”
“I complained and my spirit was overwhelmed.”
“God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you.”
(I Samuel 12:23)