|by Henry T. Blackaby||Return to Articles|
This 2006 National Day of Prayer on Thursday, May 4, may be one of the most important and significant in our history as a nation. We are facing real threats to our national security and the moral fiber of America. Spiritual decay is causing a great social unrest, including the breakdown of the family. In short, we are facing a national crisis that has the potential to bring about some very dire consequences.
“America, Honor God” — this is the theme for this year’s National Day of Prayer. In a moment of national crisis in the nation of Israel, God’s covenant people, God announced, “[T]hose who honor Me, I will honor” (1 Samuel 2:30). This promise is clear and short and simple. Yet, it is most profound. When God chooses to honor a person or a people or a nation, it is awesome what happens next!
On the other hand, we should tremble with great fear if we do not honor God. For God also declares in 1 Samuel 2:30 that “those who despise Me shall be lightly esteemed.” Our nation hangs in the balance as we teeter between these diametrically opposing truths.
In the days of God’s messenger, Malachi, the people lived with a false sense of security of what had been a very blessed relationship with God. They continued to “practice” religion while their hearts drifted far from the Lord. Even the priests had “… departed from the way” (Malachi 2:8). The nation became so sinful that God’s Word fell on deaf ears. Hypocrisy, divorce, idolatry and wickedness were the standard for the day. And God pleaded: “Return to Me and I will return to you” (Malachi 3:7).
Today, I believe God is sounding the same clarion call for America. Therefore, let us pray for the nation:
“Oh Heavenly Father, You have made Yourself known to us as a nation by Your mighty works throughout our history. From the beginning, You have been with us and through many wars and conflicts Your right arm has saved us. We have been amazingly and graciously blessed.
“Today, we confess our sin of not responding to Your right to rule in our lives and our nation. Too often we have despised and rejected Your will while imposing our own, and are now facing the consequences of our disobedience. Draw us back to Yourself, that you may return to us once again. Without You we can do nothing. You have promised that if we honor You, You will once again honor this great nation.
“That is our fervent prayer, for Your honor and glory we pray.
God will be honored when our relationship with Him is restored. Take time to know Him in a more intimate way, primarily through prayer and the reading of the Scriptures. Believe Him and obey Him thoroughly and immediately. Release your life totally to Him to allow Him to reveal Himself through you. Let others see God’s great salvation lived out in your life. Commit with me to pray for our nation daily. Finally, pray for me as I share such a challenge to our nation on May 4.