It’s so easy to get sucked into an election season. I think it always is, especially in this culture where the news is literally at our fingertips–but this season is even more triggering because of everything we’ve been through as a nation this year.
I (Kara, speaking here!) love politics. My first major was political science… until I found out I’d have to go to school for like a billion more years and leave my braces on longer (my orthodontist actually told me this) to be the president. 🙂 So yeah, because of this interest, it’s been especially easy for me to find myself drowning in all the facts and opinions surrounding this election. I’ve gone through waves of “I can’t believe they could vote for him” and “There’s no hope for the world” like I think we all have at times throughout this season.
There have been quite a few times where I’ve had to take a step back and remember that there’s more going on here than what I can see. I love the way that Val challenged us to consider eternity in her #vmpelectionseries on Instagram.
Here’s the question I’ve been wrestling with:⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Am I spending the majority of my time reading stories that only seek to divide us more? Or am I spending the majority of my time praying and inviting God to work in this?⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Want a simple action step?⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
For every minute you spend cruising the news, spend equal (or more!) time praying!
God has a plan for our nation, for the people that He loves. And His plan for us right now is to join His work by getting serious about prayer (and action, but we’ll focus on prayer today). So without any further ado, here is a guide for praying in this seemingly uncertain season.
1. PRAY FOR YOUR HEART.
Yep, there’s no way around it. It starts with us. Take some time to confess your bad attitudes surrounding this election. Have you been prideful? Vengeful? Hopeless? Tell Him about it. Ask the Lord to clean up your heart, to give you His eyes to see what He sees and love how He loves. Val talked a little more about this on this Insta post.
2. PRAY FOR OUR POLITICAL LEADERS–NOW AND FUTURE.
I think Val put it perfectly in this prayer from her new book, Springboard Prayers: A Starting Place for Holy Conversations, so I’ll leave that here.
We thank You for the governing authorities in our lives and respect that they are there with Your full knowledge. So often I respond in two different ways to my political leaders: either intense fear at the damage that can be done by their hands if their views oppose mine or intense hope at the possibility of salvation and redemption a mortal man can bring if I agree with them*. Whatever my view, both leave me making the created thing bigger than the Creator*. Let me never forget that no matter who is in office, You remain on the throne. If I’m honest, praying for anything political feels futile. But Lord, matter is beyond Your jurisdiction and no request is too big or small to lift up to You. I ask, Lord, that You would help our leaders. Protect their hearts because everything flows from them. Set their eyes straight ahead, that they may not swerve to the right or left. And Father, instead of leading the mob when one makes a mistake, let believers be the first to extend grace.
So let it be.
*Psalm 146:3, Romans 1:25, Proverbs 4:23-27
3. Pray for the outcome of the election.
I think we have to be careful of saying things like “it doesn’t matter who wins the election because God is still on the throne”. It would be naive to think there was a perfect candidate, but with two vastly different platforms, there is a candidate who is better than the other. Politicians are not our savior, but policies do affect people–who Jesus cares very much about. So, pray about who you should vote for. Pray that God’s will is done.
4. PRAY FOR PEACE IN OUR NATION.
Because of the massive tension in our country, the election results are likely to make the other side angry. While we’ve seen productive, peaceful protests over the past few months, we’ve also seen dangerous riots. Pray for the protection of people’s lives and livelihoods and for the peace that passes understanding to enter hearts and minds. (Philippians 4:7)
5. PRAY FOR UNITY AMONG BELIEVERS.
There are believers on both sides that feel very strongly their candidate is the right choice. Please remember, the bond of Christ in us is so much more crucial than even this important issue. In Ephesians 4:3-6, Paul exhorts us to,
Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
So pray that whether or not our guy wins, we’ll love one another and commit to serving our first and foremost leader, Jesus Christ, together.
These are just a few of the most basic things that have come to my mind to pray about, but I know there is so much more! Natalie Lewis has shared several more items here, but is there anything else that you would add to the list? Let us know in the comments below!
And it would be remiss of me not to mention that if you’re new around here and need a place to keep track of your prayer requests and record answered prayers, check out our prompted prayer journals here. “My World & Nation” and “My Community” are just a couple of sections we’ve included to help you find focus as you pray!