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How can we pray for America?

07 May

Our church, First Central Baptist Church in Chicopee, MA, will gather this evening for a special time of prayer, observing the National Day of Prayer. I put together a prayer guide to help lead us through the evening. The first half is material I collected over the years and the second half is material I adapted from the National Day of Prayer website. The material is available in list form or in a booklet I created for our gathering. Feel free to borrow and/or adapt for your use. Please click on the links to download a copy of the guide. Please pray for our nation.

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National Day of Prayer

May 7, 2015

The 64th annual National Day of Prayer, May 7, 2015, will have profound significance for our country.  It is an unprecedented opportunity to see the Lord’s healing and renewing power made manifest as we call on citizens to humbly come before His throne.

Our theme for 2015 is Lord, Hear Our Cry, emphasizing the need for individuals, corporately and individually, to place their faith in the unfailing character of their Creator, who is sovereign over all governments, authorities, and men.  To further highlight our theme, we’ve chosen I Kings 8:28 as our Scripture for this year:  Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence this day.”

History of the National Day of Prayer

1952: On April 17 a bill initiated by Mr. Conrad Hilton of Hilton Hotels and Senator Frank Carlson of Kansas was passed (Public Law 82-324) that the President of the United States was to set aside an appropriate day each year, other than Sunday, as a National Day of Prayer.

1987: Senator Thurmond writes the bill then introduces it to the Senate Judicial Committee. It became bill S.1378, which would amend public law 82-324.

1988: Thursday, May 8 – Ronald Reagan signs into law Public Law 100-307 the designation of the first Thursday in May as the annual observance for the National Day of Prayer.

1998: Pub. L. 105-225, August 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1258: The President shall issue each year a proclamation designating the first Thursday in May as a National Day of Prayer on which the people of the United States may turn to God in prayer and meditation at churches, in groups, and as individuals. This law was signed by President Clinton.

For more information on the National Day of Prayer, go to http://nationaldayofprayer.org/.

Prayer Guide

(Note: This prayer guide is designed to allow the Scriptures to guide our prayer. Almost all of the verses are taken from prayers in the Bible. The guide is broken into four categories with numerous suggestions for what to pray for in each grouping.)

Adoration

Creator – Nehemiah 9:6

“You are the Lord, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them; and the host of heaven worships you.

Almighty – Psalm 89:8

O Lord God of hosts, who is mighty as you are, O Lord, with your faithfulness all around you?

Deliverance – 2 Samuel 22:2–4

He said, “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge, my savior; you save me from violence. I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies.

Majesty – Jude 25

to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

Confession

Confess personal sin – Psalm 51:4

Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment.

Confess national sin – Ezra 9:6

“O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift my face to you, my God, for our iniquities have risen higher than our heads, and our guilt has mounted up to the heavens.

Confess corporate sin – Nehemiah 1:7

We have acted very corruptly against you and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, and the rules that you commanded your servant Moses.

Thanksgiving

For forgiveness – Nehemiah 9:17b

But you are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and did not forsake them.

For God’s love – 1 Chronicles 16:34

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!

For answered prayer – Psalm 116:1–2

I love the Lord, because he has heard my voice and my pleas for mercy. Because he inclined his ear to me, therefore I will call on him as long as I live.

Supplication

Greater hunger for God – Psalm 42:1

As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God.

Salvation – Romans 10:1

Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved.

Maturity – Colossians 4:12

Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ Jesus, greets you, always struggling on your behalf in his prayers, that you may stand mature and fully assured in all the will of God.

Spiritual insight – Ephesians 1:18

having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,

Spiritual power – Ephesians 3:16

that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being,

Protection from temptation – Matthew 6:13

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Preachers, evangelists – Ephesians 6:19

and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel,

Worry – Philippians 4:6

do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Wisdom – James 1:5

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.

Basic needs – Matthew 6:11

Give us this day our daily bread,

Knowledge of God’s direction – Colossians 1:9

And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,

Outreach – 2 Thessalonians 3:1

Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you,

Government leaders – 1 Timothy 2:1-4

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. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Love may abound – Philippians 1:9

And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,

 

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