Before I begin my introduction to prayer, please consider the concerns that are on your hearts.
God created us with volition, the capacity to choose.
And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die. (Genesis 2: 16-17)
He gave Adam a choice from the beginning. This was before Almighty God created Eve from Adam’ rib. So, when Adam instructed Eve he pointed out that they had a choice between the two trees the good one and the bad one.
Much later on, Moses quoted God in saying,
See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil. (Deuteronomy 30:15)
Shortly thereafter, Joshua challenged the Children of Israel,
And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. (Joshua 24:15)
The history of the Jews clearly shows their choices. When they single-heartedly served God, they prospered. When they sinned against one another and against Him they suffered, at times greatly.
Our Puritan forebears came to this land and sought to establish a city set on a hill, whose righteousness would be a beacon for all to come and share in the blessings of God. They established a loving community of single-minded service of neighbor and single-hearted service of God. The first generation, at the first sign of trouble dedicated themselves, as a community of believers, to prayerfully search their hearts to seek out and confess sin. In loving response, God miraculously, time after time, delivered them.
Unhappily the next generations began to prosper and began to rely on self instead of Jesus. When trouble, God’s warning sign, came their way, they dug themselves out with their own wits and strength. They unconsciously chose against God.
Today, America is on a path they are paving with the denials of God:
America is evading and ignoring God‘s warning signs. We are continually choosing the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. We are continually choosing sin, not God. We are continually choosing human knowledge, not life eternal.
God keeps telling people everywhere, “Do not yield to sin.” He is calling, “Choose Me, choose righteousness!”
We are believers in the reality of God, in the assurance of salvation through Christ alone and in the truth, that the only true and righteous God will punish sin. Therefore, we need to pray for America and the people around us who are oblivious to their horrific peril.
After we pray for America I will give you the opportunity to pray for the concerns that you have declared.
Lord God, Holy Spirit, we acknowledge we are sinners saved by our Lord Jesus Christ. We are aware that while He has atoned for all our sin, we still sin each day. One of the fruit You ripen in our lives is faithfulness. We ask that You make us faithful to our Lord in seeking after righteousness and turning our backs on sin.
Father, we desire to be obedient children and faithful stewards of the gift of life You have given us: life in our initial birth into the world and life in the spirit; therefore, we choose life and obedience to You, and we choose to reject our tendency to sin.
Thank you, Holy Spirit, for indwelling us and in tirelessly guiding us to and along Jesus’ way of obedience.
Now, Lord we open our hearts to seek Your blessings for each of our lives through the prayer that Jesus taught us. Saying…
Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever.