Here we are in the first week of January 2013. Most of us were hoping for a different ending to 2012. One that would bring some relief going into 2012, that relief did not come. Today our nation seems more desperate than ever, more divided than ever and more lost than ever.
It is time to pray. Not the "now I lay me down to sleep" kind of prayer, but the Daniel 10 kind of prayer where he prayed until he received an answer; or the James 5:16 kind of prayer of a righteous man; the praying for results kind of prayer.
We know from God's word that there are certain prayers that receive no response. In James 4:3 we are told our prayers are not answered because our motives are wrong. At other times, we are praying for our own agenda as in John 4:2 or Matt 20:21, where in both cases the petitioners were blinded by their own motives and could not see the kingdom purpose.
However, God does not leave us ignorant. In His word he gives us a model of what to pray for and how to pray.
Pray for Blessing and Prosperity
While in captivity, God's people were instructed to "seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile." For even in captivity, if the city prospered, they would prosper.
Luke 10 records Jesus sending his disciples out, without him, to minister. The first instruction he gave them was to "Go", followed by a prayer instruction. Luk 10:5, When you enter a house, first say 'Peace to this house.'". They were to tell the people, "...'The kingdom of God has come near to you.'"
Pray for Deliverance from Deception
As we look at America today, if there is one thing that explains the "upside down logic" we see, it is deception. We are no longer walking in the Spirit and Word of God. Generations have been taken captive by the lies of Satan. Paul told us so in 2 Corinth 4:3-4, "And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God."
Paul's mission was "to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me." Acts 26:18.
As Paul himself did, we must pray for God to open doors for us to deliver His message of Truth.
Pray for God's will and purpose to be accomplished
Christ instructs us in Matt: 9-10. "...pray this way....your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven."
This is often the area where we confuse God's will with our own motives. It is God's first and primary will that none shall perish. Romans 14:17 states that the kingdom of God is "...not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. God's will is life, and life to the fullest.
Pray for Spiritual Hunger
Pray that the people of God would begin to feel the emptiness in the things of the world. Pray that there would be a renewed desire for the things of God and the fellowship of His people.
Pray that those who do not yet know God will begin to feel the futility in the things of this world; that they would begin to see the emptiness in the answers that the world has to give.
Pray that the two, the empowered people of God and the empty people of the world, would begin to cross paths and our prayer for open doors would be answered.
Prayer is real. Prayer is transforming. All around the world, cities, and even countries, are being transformed through the power of effective, fervent prayer of righteous men and women. Pray with all me that in 2013 we will see that transformation in America through our prayers.