Column: Pray for our leaders

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Commentary by Rev. Michael VandenBerg

1 Timothy 2: I urge, then, first of all, that prayers 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.

Do you pray for your leaders? There are many ways being touted as solutions for the nation’s ills, but none is as effective as prayer. Prayer changes lives. When we pray for our leaders, it petitions God to work in their lives as godly agents of change. When we pray for our leaders, it changes our lives as God works to create affinity with those selected to rule.

Let me give you an example. When my boys were little, I learned very early on in my parenting career that always pointing out where they were making mistakes and doing wrong seemed only to keep them focused on the wrongs. When my wife and I switched our approach and looked for times that we could praise them for what they were doing right, they seemed to take on these behaviors all the more often.

How has taking up sides and pointing out wrongs worked for our country lately? Are we more at peace? Do we respect one another more? Have we seen the change we have hoped for? If not, perhaps it is time to give prayer a try and see if the actions that our leaders take as well as the perspectives that we hold, don’t both change and we find the peace that seems to confound our simple understandings.

If you are a Democrat, then I call upon you to pray for every Republican leader, daily for the next three months. If you are a Republican, then I call upon you to do the same for every Democratic leader for the same three months. In this, I don’t mean just pray that they will change, but pray for their families, their office, their staff, their health, their well-being. See if you don’t see changes that bring about a more quiet and peaceful life.

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