Prayer may be
the most humble act of dependence we’ll ever experience.
I watched an independent three-year-old
tie his shoelaces -- “all by myself.” I offered help but he refused. He knotted
the two laces, over looped, under looped, twisted, and tucked. Satisfied with
his work, the laces perched in two tangled masses on top of his shoes. I knew the
strings wouldn’t do their job after five steps.
Unfortunately, the I-can-do-it myself
spirit never completely goes away. At mid-age, we remain enamored with
ourselves, thinking we can “handle” whatever comes our way. By our senior
years, we don’t want to bother others, and we wish to take care of ourselves.
We like our independence. I like mine, and I imagine you like yours.
I’m oversimplifying what has
happened in our nation, but I think dependence on self has caused most of our
woes. When we think that we know better than Almighty God how to live our
personal lives and govern a nation of peoples, we fall into the decline of idolatry.
Self becomes god.
More laws would not help. We know that
morality cannot be legislated. Laws exist against driving while under influence
of mind-numbing substances. However, the law on paper doesn’t keep those drivers
off the roads and endangering the lives of others. Only personal convictions of
the heart can do that.
Our choices have caused a downward
spiral. Personal worlds inflated with self as god turns to illegal drugs (prescription
drugs, too) to numb their senses. One drug cartel in Mexico reaps one and half
billion dollars because we are addicted to pleasing self. Thousands have died from
drug overdoses, and thousands more have died in the drug wars as cartels maneuver
to ship drugs into the United States. We have their blood on our hands because
of our insatiable desire to escape our undone lives. Independence from God has
a high price tag.
While some in government seek the
counsel of God, others tout blatant sins -- the opposite of Judeo and Christian
values. It’s no secret that we allow the killing of unborn babies for the sake
of convenience. The general media seeks to influence and “entertain” us with
stories of sex outside of traditional marriage, of men marrying men and women
marrying women, throwing humor into the mix so we’ll swallow the ungodliness.
Those who cling to God and traditional
values (that God put in place for the good and safety of humankind) experience the
ridicule and labeling of “old fashioned” and “out of touch with the postmodern
The surmounting problems of not only our
lives, our nation, and the world seem overwhelming. Questions come to mind: When
did we become politically correct, instead of God corrected? What can I do? How
can one person do anything to influence change for a better world, a better
The answer remains simple. We can
depend upon God, exercising the privilege of prayer and voting. We can stop spouting
political views, arguing, and forwarding nasty emails about candidates or our
president. How many have equaled their prayers with the forwards of derogatory
emails? This is what I’m praying these days: “Lord, I give up. I have no wisdom
about this. Please place in office the one who will bring us back to you.”
We’re an old nation that has lost its
bearings, and we need a Caretaker, someone besides our politicians. Join nearly
50,000, already praying Sept. 28 – Nov. 6 using Max Lucado’s prayer guide. It’s
not politically slanted prayers. They admit dependence upon sovereign God. The acronym
USA aids in remembering to pray three things: Unite us, Strengthen us, and
Anoint and Appoint our next president.
One verse always seems popular during
election times, as a guide to a past straying nation, it hinged on the word “if.”
Read it afresh today. The outcome of our nation depends on how you will comply
with that word “if.” “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves
and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear
from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2
Hunger for Humility (week 41):“If my people, who are
called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn
from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their
sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles