I’ve been spending a bit of time in the Old Testament lately, and as I read, my heart continues break for our country. God is holy; so holy that even the Israelites had a hard time existing in his presence, and their culture had God at its center. Ours, sadly, does not. Isaiah prayed a prayer that I believe should be extended to our country as well. He prayed on behalf of the chosen people, but now that we have been grafted in, I hope that God will acknowledge this prayer on our behalf as well. Isaiah 64, verses 5 through 9 says:
“You come to the help of those who gladly do right, who remember your ways. But when we continued to sin against them, you were angry. How then can we be saved? All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all of our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. No one calls on your name or strives to lay hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us and made us waste away because of our sins. Yet, O Lord, you are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand. Do not be angry beyond measure, O Lord; do not remember our sins forever. Oh, look upon us, we pray, for we are all your people.”
This is part of the prayer Isaiah prayed on behalf of his people. And this is the prayer I pray on behalf of ours. We need to humble ourselves before our holy God – those of us who call him Lord. I like when Isaiah says, “do not be angry beyond measure, O Lord; do not remember our sins forever”. We do serve a God who is slow to anger and abounding in love, but even his patience has limits. I encourage you to pray for our country; especially for those who call themselves believers in Christ. We are God’s clay, and I believe that he can use people like you and me to spark a change in our nation.
I believe that we, as believers, have a responsibility to those around us. In the Old Testament, an entire nation could be judged as one group, even if some of the people in that nation were innocent. In America, a lot of godlessness has, and is, taking place. For Christians to be passive bystanders is not what I believe God wants from us. If nothing else, we should be on our knees for our country. Anyone with eyes can see where we’re headed. While it is day, before the night comes, we need to do all we can to shine the light of Christ in dark places. I encourage you to pray for our nation, and to ask God how he can use you in his master plan.