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"I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving 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.This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth."  -- 1 Timothy 2:1-4

For the past couple of years, I've been posting prayer requests from the Presidential Prayer Team, and I will continue that in this new discussion for 2018.  

One of the most commonly quoted passages used to encourage us to pray for our leaders is 1 Timothy 2:1-2.  We understand that God calls us to pray for our leaders; elsewhere we're told that when kings rule in righteousness, the people are happy.

But there's more to it than that.  We need to pray for our leaders in such a way that their leadership results in open doors for the Gospel and for people to come to know Christ.  This is the goal of verse 4 - "all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth".  We are to pray with this end in mind.

So it's not just about praying that a bill will (or won't) pass.  It's about praying that the result of the bill will be to bring honor to God and open doors for the Gospel.  We often pray for the types of results that we can immediately see - that a candidate will or won't be elected, that a bill will pass or be repealed, etc.  But God calls us to pray with far more than that in mind.  Humility requires us to admit that we don't know what God knows about what might be best for our country, best for the people, etc.  

So I encourage you, as you pray for our leaders, to pray with God's purposes in mind - not conservative purposes or liberal purposes but the purposes of the one to whom all history points.

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Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Today, President Donald Trump will be meeting with the crew of the Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 at the White House. After an engine failed midflight and partially exploded, debris breached a window in the passenger cabin. The crew was able to descend to a safe altitude and make an emergency landing, but one person died in the accident. In their invitation to the White House, the pilot and crew are being hailed as heroes for their quick actions that saved the lives of the other 143 passengers aboard the aircraft.

The president will also be meeting with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Secretary of Defense James Mattis, and Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen. While the details of their meeting has not been made public, there are several complex issues that the nation is currently facing, ranging from border security to the negotiations and upcoming peace talks with North Korea.

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For the president as he meets with the crew from Southwest Airlines Flight 1380.
  • For grace and healing for the family of the passenger who perished in the accident as they mourn the loss of their loved one.
  • For wisdom for the president and his cabinet as they meet to discuss national concerns.

The President's Schedule

  • 11:00AM EDT
    The President receives his intelligence briefing
  • 12:00PM EDT
    The President presents the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy to the U.S. Military Academy football team
  • 1:45PM EDT
    The President welcomes the crew and passengers of Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 to the White House
  • 2:30PM EDT
    Press Briefing with Press Secretary Sarah Sanders

Thursday, May 03, 2018

Today, President Donald Trump will be taking part in the National Day of Prayer event in the capital. During the morning, he will meet with five people who were directly affected by the Sutherland Springs church shooting last November. The meeting at the White House will include the church pastor and his wife, Frank and Sherri Pomeroy, as well as three church members.

The National Day of Prayer evening services will be held in the Statuary Hall of the U.S. Capitol Building and will begin at 8 pm. Eastern Time. The theme of this year will focus on unity as people of all faiths are invited to unite in prayer for the nation and its leaders.

At 7:30 pm Eastern Time, the live stream of the evening service will be available on the Presidential Prayer Team’s website. Join together with prayer team members from around the globe as we unite in prayer for the nation!

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For wisdom, grace, and compassion for the president as he meets with the survivors and those so deeply affected by the shooting last year.
  • That God would fill with wisdom the many national leaders that gather today to pray in the capital.
  • For unity for our leaders as they work to do what is best for the nation.
  • For unity for the body of Christ as we pray today that the will of God would be accomplished through our leaders in Washington.

The President's Schedule

  • 11:00AM EDT
    The President attends the National Day of Prayer
  • 12:00PM EDT
    The President receives his intelligence briefing
  • 2:00PM EDT
    Press Briefing with Press Secretary Sarah Sanders

Sunday, May 06, 2018

President Donald Trump is in Washington D.C. for the weekend and will be spending the day at the White House. He hasn’t released any public schedule for the day and will likely be resting and preparing for a busy week ahead of him and the other leaders in the capital. The president is planning to have several meetings with congressional leaders.

Here are a few of the issues that need prayer in the first half of the week:

  • Monday, the president will be speaking to Congress about the need to reduce the national deficit and is planning to ask for radical spending cuts to accomplish this task.
  • On Tuesday, the House of Representatives begins another session and has a full week of hearings on topics including the opioid crisis, relations in Iran, military technology, and the workforce.
  • On Wednesday, the president is scheduled to meet with congressional leaders to further the political dialogue around biofuels and the future of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For wisdom for the president and congressional leaders as they work to tackle a lot of legislative issues this week.
  • For guidance for our leaders as they test and weigh the many different options ahead of them to accomplish what is in the best interest of the nation.
  • For unity for the nation and for the president and Congress as they work together to solve tough issues.

The President's Schedule

  • 11:35AM EDT
    The President attends a roundtable discussion with supporters
  • 12:35PM EDT
    The President gives remarks at a luncheon with supporters
  • 1:20PM EDT
    The President attends a roundtable discussion on tax reform

Sunday, May 13, 2018

 

Today, President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, and the first family are celebrating Mother’s Day at the White House. At a Mother’s Day event on Friday, the first lady praised mothers across the nation saying that Mother’s Day should be celebrated every day, “It takes an incredible amount of strength, a lot of time, a generous amount of patience, and all of our love. As moms, we are so incredibly privileged to be able to bring children into this world and be a part of helping them grow into adults.”

She added, “Because of the powerful bond between a mother and her child, when they feel emotions, so do we – whether they are happy or nervous, sad or excited, we feel those things with them. I think it is one of the most powerful and beautiful parts of motherhood.”

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For the first family as they celebrate Mother’s Day.

  • For rest and rejuvenation for the entire family this weekend as they prepare for the upcoming busy week.

  • For God to bless First Lady Melania Trump and bless her efforts and initiatives across the nation.

  • For the first family to be able to draw closer together and use this time to strengthen their bond together.

  • For God to protect and strengthen the unity in marriage for the president and first lady.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

President Donald Trump proclaimed today as Peace Officers Memorial Day in honor of peacekeepers and law enforcement officers across the nation. In the official proclamation, the president said, “In humble appreciation of our hardworking law enforcement officers, Melania and I will light the White House in blue on May 15. I call upon all Americans to observe Peace Officers Memorial Day and Police Week with appropriate ceremonies and activities.” In the morning, President Trump will give remarks at 37th Annual National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service in the U.S. Capitol building.

Yesterday, First Lady Melania Trump underwent kidney surgery to treat a benign kidney condition. She was treated at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center near Washington D.C. The first lady's communications director, Stephanie Grisham said that the First Lady Melania Trump, “will likely remain there for the duration of the week. The first lady looks forward to a full recovery so she can continue her work on behalf of children everywhere.”

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For the president as he calls on the nation to honor the lives and sacrifices of the nation’s law enforcement and peacekeepers.
  • For a swift recovery and healing for the first lady following surgery.
  • For energy and rejuvenation as the first lady returns to work in the coming days.
  • For the first family as they spend time together following the surgery that God would use this time to strengthen and protect their family bond.

The President's Schedule

  • 11:00AM EDT
    The President gives remarks at the 37th Annual National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service
  • 1:00PM EDT
    The President participates in a Senate Republican policy lunch

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

President Donald Trump is hosting Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev today at the White House. As Uzbekistan is a neighbor to Afghanistan, regional security is likely to be the primary order of business. Thought, trade, economic investment, and national progress and reform are also on the table. The White House press release stated, “President Trump and President Mirziyoyev will renew the United States-Uzbekistan bilateral strategic partnership, in order to pursue shared interests and address emerging challenges.”

Today, the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee will be voting whether or not to endorse President Trump’s nomination for CIA Director, Gina Haspel. This vote comes after the in-depth confirmation hearings of last week.

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For President Trump as he meets with President Mirziyoyev, that God would guide their discussion and give the president wisdom in his leadership and decision making.
  • For discernment for the Senate Intelligence Committee as the vote on endorsing Gina Haspel as CIA Director and that they would seek godly wisdom and understanding to make the decision that is in the best interest of the nation.

The President's Schedule

  • 11:00AM EDT
    The President receives his intelligence briefing
  • 11:45AM EDT
    The President participates in the arrival of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan
  • 11:50AM EDT
    The President will participate in a photo opportunity with the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan in the Oval Office
  • 12:00PM EDT
    The President participates in an expanded bilateral working lunch with the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan
  • 12:45PM EDT
    The President participates in the departure of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan
  • 2:45PM EDT
    The President participates in a photo opportunity with the White House News Photographers Association award recipients
  • 3:15PM EDT
    The President hosts the California Sanctuary State Roundtable

Thursday, May 17, 2018

With the aim of giving Congress ample time to review any new deal on the North American Free Trade Agreement before the end of the year, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan set today as the deadline for President Donald Trump and the U.S. officials involved in the negotiations. The president and his team are still working hard on reaching an agreement with Canadian and Mexican officials.

In addition, the White House is hosting a trade delegation from China. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will lead discussions with China’s Vice Premier Liu He. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and other senior administration officials will attend. The White House official statement said, “These meetings are a continuation of the talks held in Beijing two weeks ago and will focus on rebalancing the United States-China bilateral economic relationship.”

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For wisdom for President Trump as he leads in making decisions that will shape the U.S. economy and foreign policy.
  • For guidance for administration officials in their efforts to work out trade deals with China today and tomorrow.
  • For cooperation as the administration works to negotiate trade agreements with the allies and partners of the United States.

The President's Schedule

  • 12:15PM EDT
    The President has lunch with the Secretary of Defense
  • 1:00PM EDT
    Press Briefing with Press Secretary Sarah Sanders
  • 1:45PM EDT
    The President meets with the Secretary General of NATO
  • 2:00PM EDT
    The President participates in an expanded bilateral meeting with the Secretary General of NATO
  • 2:45PM EDT
    The President participates in the departure of the Secretary General of NATO

Multiple Fatalities in Texas School Shooting

Student Suspect in Police Custody

Multiple fatalities have been reported, mostly students, and a dozen others injured in a Texas high school shooting Friday morning.

The suspected shooter was taken into police custody and a second suspect has been detained, both students.

Police officers responded to Santa Fe High School southeast of Houston after reports that a shooter had opened fire inside. One police officer was injured in the shooting, and the full extent of the officer’s injuries are not immediately known. Police are also searching the premises for explosive devices.

From the White House, President Trump said, "I have to begin by expressing our sadness and heartbreak over the deadly shooting at Santa Fe High School in Texas, just took place moments ago. We're closely monitoring the situation and federal authorities are coordinating with local officials. This has been going on too long in our country. Too many years, too many decades now. We grieve for the terrible loss of life and send our support and love to everyone affected by this absolutely horrific attack to the students, families, teachers and personnel at Santa Fe High. We're with you in this tragic hour and we will be with you forever. My administration is determined to do everything in our power to protect our students, secure our schools, and to keep weapons out of the hands of those who pose a threat to themselves, and to others. Everyone must work together at every level of government to keep our children safe. May God heal the injured and may God comfort the wounded and may God be with the victims and with the victims’ families."

Sources: Fox News, Associated Press, CNN
As the Lord Leads, please pray:
  • For the comfort of Almighty God upon the families of those who have had their lives taken from them this morning.
  • For the wounded who are being treated in area hospitals and for the physicians and others attending them.
  • That authorities at every level will engage in doing whatever can be done to put an end to these horrific acts.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

President Donald Trump announced that today is National Armed Forces Day. In his proclamation, he called on the nation to “pay tribute to the extraordinary men and women who serve our Nation with valor and distinction in all branches of the military.

President Trump highlighted the efforts and success of the military actions against ISIS and Al-Qa’ida in Syria and Iraq. Due to the sacrifice of so many, the president voiced his support and gratitude, “All across America, we enjoy the blessings of liberty because our Nation’s finest men and women willingly accept the call to service.”

At the time of publishing, the president had not released as scheduled. He is expected to be in Washington over the weekend.

First Lady Melania is still recovering from kidney surgery at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland.

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • In thanksgiving for the sacrifice of the men and women of the Armed Forces that protect the nation.
  • For wisdom as President Trump uses the weekend to reflect on the events of the past week and plan for next week.
  • For a swift recovery and healing for First Lady Melania Trump following her surgery.
Melania Trump
First Lady of the United States

Melania Trump nee Kravs was born in April 1970 in Novo Mesto in Slovenia, which was then a part of Yugoslavia. She grew up in a modest apartment block before moving into a two-story house when she was a teenager. She attended the Secondary School of Design and Philosophy and studied at the University of Ljubjiana. She speaks six languages.

She began modeling at age five and started doing commercials at 16, during which time she changed her last name to Krauss. She signed with a modeling agency in Milan and modeled for fashion houses there and in Paris. At the urging of her agency’s owner, she moved to New York City on a legal work visa. She obtained a green card and became a lawful permanent resident in 2001. She gained United States citizenship in 2006.

She met Donald Trump at a Fashion Week event, and a year later they were married at the Episcopal Church of Bethsaida-by-the-Sea in Palm Beach, Florida. In March 2006, she gave birth to their son, Barron William Trump. She was quietly active in the 2016 presidential campaign and assumed the role of First Lady of the United States on January 20, 2017. She is the second foreign-born woman to hold this title, after Louisa Adams, wife of John Quincy Adams, who was born in London.

Melania Trump is a Catholic.

In the News

America’s First Lady, Melania Trump, is raising her public profile, delivering her first major White House address in which she detailed her focus as the first lady – a campaign aimed at boosting the social and physical well-being of children and reducing “destructive and addictive behavior” on social media and beyond.

Her “Be Best” campaign “will champion the many successful well-being programs that provide children with the tools and skills required for emotional, social, and physical health,” according to the website for the newly-unveiled push.

“There are too many critical issues facing children today,” Mrs. Trump said during a speech in the Rose Garden as the president and other administration officials looked on. Later President Trump, after hugging and kissing the First Lady, said, “America is truly blessed to have a First Lady so devoted to our country and to our children.”

Monday, May 21, 2018

Today, President Donald Trump will participate in the swearing-in ceremony of Director of the Central Intelligence Agency Gina Haspel. The Senate confirmed Haspel late last week to take over for now- Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

President Trump spoke with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Sunday to discuss North Korea’s recent statements to call off the upcoming summit. They spoke about the various actions that North Korea has recently taken and talked about how the U.S. and South Korea should respond. As many details and final decisions are still tenuous, President Trump will need godly guidance as he determines the next steps.

Today, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will unveil a comprehensive strategy for addressing Iran following the decertification of the Iran nuclear deal. Pompeo’s Senior Advisor Brian Hook said of their efforts, “We need a new framework that’s going to address the totality of Iran’s threats. We see an opportunity to counter and address Iran’s nuclear and proliferation threats and to create a better nonproliferation and deterrence architecture for Iran and the region.”

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For wisdom for CIA Director Haspel as she steps fully into her newly appointed role.
  • For guidance for President Trump as he evaluates the best course of action regarding the relationship with North Korea.
  • For President Trump and Secretary of State Pompeo as they work to determine the next steps in addressing the U.S. relationship to Iran.

The President's Schedule

  • 10:35AM EDT
    The President participates in the swearing-in ceremony of the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency
  • 1:30PM EDT
    The President participates in the signing ceremony for S.J. Res. 57
  • 2:10PM EDT
    The President hosts the NASCAR Cup Series champion Martin Truex Jr. and team
  • 6:30PM EDT
    The President has dinner with governors on border security and safe communities

President Evaluates Abortion Rule

Proposal to prevent funding to organizations that provide abortions

 

President Donald Trump recently announced that he would be taking steps to keep federal funds from any organization that offers or refers women abortions. While federal funds currently do not pay for abortion services, these new rules would prevent Title X funds, which are intended for family planning services, to go to any organization that also conduct abortions.

These new rules are similar to rules that were in place during the Reagan administration. These rules also come on the heels of Planned Parenthood filing suit due to federal Title X funds being expanded to organizations that offer natural family planning and abstinence-only education. Following the review of the White House budget office, these rules would go into place.

Sources: NPR, The Economist, Washington Examiner

 

As the Lord Leads, please pray:

  • For the White House budget office to effectively make plans that will increase the well-being of U.S. women and children.
  • For pregnant women to be provided for and given the hope they need to care for their babies.
  • For the unborn—that they would be protected while in the womb, and provided for once born.

 

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