Saturday, July 23, 2016

Praying for a good land

Red Leaf House of Prayer: check it out.
TODAY'S SPECIAL: Psalm 85:1-13

TO CHEW ON: "Yes, the Lord will give what is good;
And our land will yield its increase." Psalm 85:12

Is the state of our land—the country we live in with its political borders, the very dirt under our feet—dependent on God's blessing? The sons of Korah, writers of this psalm, would make that connection. In this prayer for favour on their land they:
  • remind God of His past goodness to them including the fact that He has returned them from captivity  (Psalm 85:1-3).
  • beg for spiritual revival ("Restore us... revive us ... show us mercy ... grant Your salvation" - Psalm 85:4-7)
  • dream about how His mercy on the land will look (Psalm 85:8-13). It's a metaphorical picture of good qualities reunited: mercy and truth meeting; righteousness and peace kissing.  There's a new crop of truth springing from the ground like a germinating field. Righteousness looks down on it from heaven (we envision the sun, smiling down on new growth).

I do my share of complaining about the state of my country—its judicial foot-dragging, its penchant toward political correctness that turns a blind eye when some break the law while it clamps down hard on others, and its slide into immorality and ethical greyness. But do I bring these concerns to God as much as I bellyache about them to others?

If not, why not? I suspect it's because at some level I haven't made the connection between His power and the state of the country I love.

I want to pick up the slack so my land "will yield its increase" not only of physical plenty but of righteousness, truth, and mercy.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for being the God of nations and lands as well as individuals. Help me to cast my concerns about Canada on You. I pray for a time we will "make His footsteps our pathway" - Psalm 85:13.

MORE: Prayer for our country

In her book Praying with Fire, Barbara Billett writes prayers based on passages from the Bible. In her prayer for Leaders / Word Confession for Canada she writes the following—an excerpt from a longer passage  (substitute the name of your country in places there are references to Canada):

"Father, in the Name of Jesus, You have given me the keys of the kingdom; and whatever I bind on earth is bound in heaven; and whatever I loose on earth is loosed in heaven. Therefore in the mighty Name of Jesus, I cast down the wisdom of this world—that which is earthly, sensual and demonic from over our nation and the leaders of our nation in the Name of Jesus.

I command wrong mind sets, philosophies and belief systems to be utterly overthrown and demolished from the minds of our Canadian leaders in government, the law enforcement, and judicial systems, the Armed Forces, (the media [my insert]), and the educational system in the Name of Jesus.

It is written in Your Word that the heart of the king is in the hand of You, Lord, and that You turn it whichever way You desire. I believe that the hearts of our Prime Minister and the leaders of Canada are in Your hand and that their decisions are divinely directed by You..."

(Based on: Matthew 18:18-19; James 3:15; 2 Corinthians 10:4-5; Proverbs 21,1.

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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