I always have this set of prayers and scriptures I speak in the shower in the morning. I’ve added to it over the years, but I don’t typically take away from it, nor do I divert from that script. It’s not that I robotically run through my morning prayers; it’s just what has always worked in the past to set up my day. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Am I right?!
This morning was different, though. Even as I felt the same concerns I might usually have for an upcoming day at the critical care bedside, my mind wasn’t on that. It was somewhere else. I realized I was feeling a burden to pray for our country. It’s not like I haven’t done that this year, but this morning the desire was stronger. The thing was, I had no idea what to pray. I mean, can we all agree this year has been full of uncertainties? All I knew was we needed God’s hand. So, I prayed.
I prayed in the Spirit, my unique prayer language falling quickly from my lips. I prayed for forgiveness for my own judgement, pride, and sin. I stood in the gap for others. I stood in the gap for our Nation. As I prayed I could feel the power of the Holy Spirit, and I envisioned other Saints across the country joining me in prayerful petition for God’s will. I tried to embody the scripture to humble myself, pray, seek His face, turn from my sin in repentance, so God might heal our land.
The thing is, although I’ve seen a lot of ugliness come out of this country this year, I am still abundantly grateful to be an American. And although I’ve felt like sometimes people consider the US the center of the universe, the fact is I am exceptionally proud to be born in a free Nation, under God, with the privileges allowed me. I haven’t thanked God enough this year for the blessing of my life as an American citizen. Instead I’ve spent a lot of time disgruntled this year. I am convicted.
I don’t always know what is right, and I don’t always know what is wrong, but I do know I serve a God who knows all things. He also controls all things. So even when you don’t know what specifically you should pray for, you can still pray. You can still seek. You can still say, “I know you got this, God. Please do that thing that only you can do.”
Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.
2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.