Shut Up and Pray

Dear Christ follower, this is ALL our fault.

Before you get offended – and believe me, I WANT you to be offended, continue to read.

2 Chronicles 7:14 says, “if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

There is so much hope wrapped up in these 38 little words.

In light of all the things going on in the world, I returned to this verse to pray through it when I realized, God’s promise to hear, forgive and heal comes with a condition.

As His people, we have to “humble…” ourselves, “pray and seek [his] face” and “turn from [our] wicked ways.”

I read it one time and was immediately dumbstruck. We have been and are being quite prideful, self-centered and wicked, very, very wicked.

Not the county at large, not the police, the protesters, not even the rioters – HIS PEOPLE. Christians. God’s Chosen. Co-heirs with Christ. Us. Me. You.

So, I asked, “Lord, how are WE being wicked?” God immediately turned the spot light on me and responded, “What have I asked you to do?”

I looked over the verse and replied, “Lord, I do these things, in fact, I was doing these very things when you said I wasn’t.”

“For whom have you been praying?”

I made a mental list of the people I have been praying for and about. 

“You’re forgetting someone.”

I went back over my list and remembered a co-worker I often “disagree” with.

Not them.

I grabbed my phone and searched for people I should be praying for and came across 1 Timothy 2:1-2, “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.”

It was at that moment God broadened the light for me to see more clearly where he was going with who it was that needed prayer.

I recalled a conversation at church about our national leaders. One person, adamantly refused to support the President but not even willing to pray for him.

Hands down. Wouldn’t do it. “No sir, ain’t gonna happen.” This is a person who claims to follow Jesus, refusing to pray for another human being. Probably prayed plenty of times for him to be removed but not once that he lead in a Godly way so that we “lead a peaceful and quiet life.” 

BAM! There it was.

Don’t have to look very hard to see that we are not enjoying either of those right now. Are things peaceful in your neck of the woods? They
aren’t here. Has your city been quiet the last couple weeks, months…want me to go on?

So, let me ask you, is the President on your prayer sheet? Was the previous one? How ’bout the one before that?

Just be honest with yourself.

When I read that verse, I do not see an escape clause. The verse does NOT end with, “…unless you disagree with them.”

Paul clearly means, that we are to be praying for the President – but not just Him. Government officials at every level, “…all who are in high positions… .” That means local, state and Federal.

I am guilty of not praying for our Presidents, current or previous. Whether I agree with them or not is of no consequence and the same is true for you.

This is not a Left v Right thing. It’s not a Civil Liberties issue. It is from the word of God. Paul says, “I urge” not “you must” but that is kind of like your mom saying, “It’d be nice if you cleaned your room.” She’s really saying “CLEAN YOUR ROOM.” It’s not a choice. Not cleaning isn’t an option and neither is prayer. Take a look through scripture and see how many times prayer comes up. Jesus went off to pray by himself all the time – and he IS God – you think maybe we should take it more seriously?

Wait, I’m not done.

So, later today, just before you spout off about how wrong “BLM” is and how “all lives matter” or how white people and police are all racist,  stop and ask yourself, “have I done what God has asked of me? Have I prayed for the people that are in leadership positions so that we can live in peace and quiet?”

If your answer is “no” then shut-up…and pray!

There is more than enough blame to go around and more of it belongs on our shoulders than I think we realize. 

Ashamed?

I am.

We all should.

2 Comments

VERY WELL said and true. I have prayed for them occasionally but I need to be more consistent.

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