This is the National Day of Prayer. Is it a day set aside for our entire nation to pray or a day set aside to pray for our nation? Whichever way you understand it, today is a day to pray!
According to Wikipedia, the first Thursday of May is “an annual day of observance held on the first Thursday of May, designated by the United States Congress, when people are asked ‘to turn to God in prayer and meditation’. The law formalizing its annual observance was enacted in 1952.”
So there has been a NDOP for a looooong time. I don’t know when I first heard about it, but it has always seemed just a little bit silly to me to set apart a day to pray. Don’t most Christians pray every day?
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (New International Version, ©2011)
16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Did we need to have a day set aside for it?
Recently, I started thinking. (Good thing to do now and then.) It’s not really a day to remind Christians to pray. It’s a day set aside to remind everyone in the world that America is a praying Christian nation.
We may not all pray in the same posture. Some do it standing, some kneeling, others face down on the floor and yet others lifting hands to the Lord.
We don’t all pray the same prayers. Some pray only scripture, some prayers written by others and some of us wing it.
And we don’t all pray in the same way. Some pray aloud, some silently, some murmuring and some through tears. (And some of us combine them all!)
But the point is, we are a praying Christian nation. And the world should know.
While I’m on the subject of prayer, I wanted to share a blog I happened on today that really blessed me. It’s written by a woman in Denver. I don’t know her, but I loved what she had to say.
This woman has a sweet voice, and on this blog she has a Bible Study she wrote on a “new” way to pray. (It’s not really new, but she shares it with a fresh view.)
In it she refers to scriptures that thrill the heart. James 4:8-“Come near to God and He will come near to you.” Zephaniah 3:17-“The Lord your God is with you, the mighty warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in His love He will no longer rebuke you but will rejoice over you with singing.”
Don’t you love the idea of God taking great delight in you? Not just delight but great delight! And to think of God rejoicing over each one of us, singing, just brings me to tears.
Check out Jennifer’s blog if you get the chance.
And don’t forget to pause today to pray.