“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.”
-1 Timothy 2:1-2
Remember when Christians used to pray for their political leaders? Remember when evangelicals everywhere would hold prayer vigils asking God to help good ‘ole George Dubya? Remember when National Day of Prayer meant pray for leaders and our country, not pray that the electoral votes would swing the way we want?
I’m realizing that most Christians only pray for Republicans.
I have been appalled at the amount of Facebook posts, photos, and blog updates that repeatedly and chronically blast our political leaders. Honest critique and open dialogue are certainly necessary to the entire political process. But when my Facebook feed is repeatedly clouded with negativity, finger-pointing and name-bashing mostly from people who claim to be followers of Christ, I have to speak up.
Whether or not you agree with someone’s policies or ideals, as Christians we are called to pray and make intercession for our political leaders. Do you disagree with every single decision they’ve made? Do their policies assault everything you hold dearly? Do they appear to flaunt the Constitution and American ideals? Fine. PRAY. Scripture tells us to pray, constantly and often and on every occasion, with thanksgiving. Pray for him or them or whoever is in power.
But what if this so-called leader stands against everything you stand for? Even better! Jesus says, “Love your enemies; do good to those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44).
I would like to challenge every Christian believer out there whether you are a Republican, Democrat, independent, libertarian, expatriate, apathetic, or threatening to defect… The next time you feel compelled to post something that tears down a specific person, maybe you should try praying for them before you hit “Post” or “Send.” For every critique we make, let’s breathe out a prayer of intercession.
Even if everything inside of you down to the deepest core of who you are rails against a certain political leader or party (current or potential), remember that people are never our enemies. People are just like us, deeply flawed but still created in the image of God. The greatest foe we have is either ourselves or the real Enemy.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities,against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
Never forget who the real enemy is.