We all would agree that 2020 was an extremely difficult year. And less then two weeks into the New Year, 2021 is off to a rough start as well. We are living in a time of uncertainty, confusion, and disappointment. The nation is not only divided, but many are discouraged, frustrated and dismayed with cultural and political trends. With all of those feelings, along with the current headlines, it would be extremely easy to feel overwhelmed and anxious.
In moments like this, we need to be reminded that our peace is rooted in Christ. Read that one more time: our peace is rooted in Christ.
When Jesus was telling His disciples of His departure, He left them with some encouraging words in John 14:27:
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”
He knew they needed to hear it, and so do we.
The peace that Christ provides in our life doesn’t even compare to the temporary, shallow peace of the world. Adrian Rogers once said,
“Peace is not the subtraction of problems from life; peace is the addition of power to meet those problems.”
While in prison, Paul experienced that perfect peace. In fact, while in shackles, he encouraged believers. In Philippians 4:6-7, he writes,
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Dear friend, I’ll be honest with you: in these next 2-4 years, we may have every earthly reason to be anxious. In fact, if we allow it, the waters of worry could rise high enough to sink our ship of joy. However, when we bring God our anxious and worried hearts to Him in prayer, He will take our worries from us and replace them with His perfect peace. I don’t know about you, but I believe that’s a wonderful exchange!
- FOR THOSE IN AUTHORITY: Pray for the freshman political leaders listed below as they begin a new year, a new legislative session and make important decisions about how to respond to the COVID-19 health crisis, the lock-down and the resulting economic downturn. Rev. Franklin Graham is calling for us to pray for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as their inauguration is scheduled for next week.
- U.S. Representative Mary Miller (R-Effingham)
- State Senator Karina Villa (D-Elgin)
- State Senator Win Stoller (R-Germantown Hills)
- State Senator John Connor (D-Crest Hill)
- State Senator Meg Loughran Cappel (D-Shorewood)
- State Senator Darren Bailey (R-Effingham)
- State Senator Terri Bryant (R-Murphysboro)
- State Representative Lakesia Collins (D-Chicago)
- State Representative Margaret Croke (D-Chicago)
- State Representative Denyse Wang Stoneback (D-Chicago)
- State Representative Tim Ozinga (R-Mokena)
- State Representative Janet Yang Rohr (D-Naperville)
- State Representative Maura Hirschauer (D-Batavia)
- State Representative Chris Bos (R-Lake Zurich)
- State Representative Martin McLaughlin (R-Cary)
- State Representative Suzanne Ness (D-Crystal Lake)
- State Representative Jackie Haas (R-Kankakee)
- State Representative Dagmara Avelar (85)
- State Representative Mark Luft (R-Pekin)
- State Representative Adam Niemerg (R-Louisville)
- State Representative Amy Elik (R-Alton)
- State Representative Paul Jacobs (R-Murphysboro)
- State Representative David Friess (R-Red Bud)
Pray for the Sanctity of Life:
- ABORTION: Scripture teaches us that the image of God dwells equally in ALL people [Gen. 9:6], yet far too many in our culture believe that killing pre-born human beings is a legitimate choice. Many so-called “progressives” advocate for this under the banner of “Reproductive Rights” for women. Yet these narratives deny God’s truth about the sanctity of life and when it begins. Moreover, we know that God hates the shedding of innocent blood. (Proverbs 6:16-19)
Please pray for God’s forgiveness for our culture’s wickedness and complicity in the destruction of human life. Though God commands, “You Shall Not Murder,” we have instead legalized it and subsidized it with our tax dollars, and have failed to treat all human life as sacred to the Lord. We deserve God’s judgment, but please cry out to God for his MERCY on our state and nation. We are without excuse, yet call upon our loving God to cause the fear of the Lord to fall upon our state and nation so that we would no longer turn a blind eye to our sin or our nation’s sin.
- THE CHURCH: The Christian Church has failed to speak, teach and defend God’s truth on this and other commands. We have failed to challenge the culture regarding God’s definitions of righteousness and wickedness. Our salt and light has been co-opted and corrupted by the apostles of this world. Pray that God Almighty would forgive our sinful silence. Because of our hope in Jesus, we can boldly approach the throne and beg Him to have mercy upon us and heal our land of its great sins.
- PRC’s: Lift up all pregnancy resource centers and those diligently reaching out to vulnerable mothers who feel as if abortion is their only option. Please also ask that God would put into place legislators who value the sanctity of life and will work to pass laws that help protect the life of the unborn.
Pray for Families:
- STUDENT WELFARE: Pray for students, parents and ministers to use the time during the COVID-19 restrictions to disciple children and help them understand what God commands of all of us. Pray that these students would have a solid community through their church, school, family, and friends.
- GRANDPARENTS: That God would use grandparents to fearlessly proclaim the Word of God regarding sin and God’s love. Pray for their role in the training of their grandchildren and wisdom on how to instill a Biblical worldview.
- FAMILIES AS SALT AND LIGHT: Pray that God would use your family to spread the truth and light of the Gospel.
[Jesus] has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever abandon you,” so that we confidently say,
“The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid.
What will man do to me?”