A friend of mine posted a video recently where she encouraged us to – not think about the things we don’t want, but about those things we do desire relative to those areas within which we operate. Mine is government. I earnestly desire clear vision in government and true vision in government, and I think about it. A lot.
While I hear a lot of comments from people who are dissatisfied with government, I hear precious little vision coming from those same voices. My friend used the example of Esther, a woman in the Old Testament who won the king’s favor and reversed an edict (a proclamation by someone in authority that has the force of law – these days we call it an executive order) to destroy the Jews, replacing it with one which granted them favor.
There has undeniably been an assault on Judeo-Christian values of late – a desire to remove them from their traditional place of prominence – so I think her inference to the time of Esther works. My friend suggested that we consider those things we would put in our own edicts and then pray them. Good idea.
So in the spirit of that, instead of agitating and trying to figure out a way to seize control of government, how about we pray for the establishment of a new edict in government? Don’t you know that anything seized by force will eventually be replaced by force? Look at the history books. No, we want peace and I believe we can have it.
Before I give you my edict (which is of no force but has influence), I want to say that I’m not suggesting that we require every man, woman, and child believe as I do, but that values that led to the establishment of the nation are worth hanging onto. Our forefathers came to this land to escape oppressive national religions. They wanted freedom of (and from) religions that dictated to them. They founded a new nation based on freedom and ideals that would allow that same privilege to citizens of this new country. To impose your religion on others is less than Christ did, and if He didn’t, what the heck are we doing? To support the values and ideals of America as it was then, we need to uphold everyone’s right to worship (or not) as they choose – just as Christ did and does. In matters of faith, we have free will and so do all Americans. We should not support in any way, men and women who would take that away from others.
So, just for the heck of it, and the hope that some churches and some of you will join me, here’s the edict (the one I’m praying for, not trying to legislate or enforce):
1. That we would seek to truly know God.
2. That the Greatest Commandment and John 17:22 would guide our hearts and minds.
3. That the hearts of the fathers and mothers would be returned to the children and visa versa.
4. That mature men and women of God, devoid of pride, greed, and other character flaws would rise up and take it upon themselves to learn what it truly means to serve God and man in government. That they would have the compassion of Christ, the wisdom of Solomon, and be rightly able to discern what is best for this great country and everyone in it. That they would realize the gravity and responsibility and privilege it is to serve. And they would have the courage to make the decisions that will be placed before them.
5. That the founding principles of our country would be honored and observed.
6. That God would bless our nation with grace and mercy and forgiveness as we bless others similarly.
7. That God would remove those leaders (and those who enable them) who seek personal or special interest gain, and that He would open our eyes to recognize them.
8. That power would cease to be a motivator for those in public service.
9. That we would once again respect all those placed in leadership over us.
10. That the spirit of anarchy and lawlessness would be no more.
11. That we would have peace. World peace. National peace. Community peace. Individual peace. Interesting that in order to get to the first, we have to focus on the last.
12. That God would make our enemies to be at peace with us throughout my lifetime and the lifetimes of our grandchildren.
My heart isn’t in this corporate revolt against government – not because there’s no merit in some of the things being sought after, but because my vision is bigger. Old Testament kings faced with similar conditions petitioned God for and were granted peaceful reigns for their lifetimes. Why not that in our lives and in our nation?
I’m no king but I believe God hears the cry of my heart when I pray. And that before I even ask, He’s answering.
Cry with me?