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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types of results that we can immediately see - that a candidate will or won't be elected, that a bill will pass or be repealed, etc.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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North Korea May Revive Nuclear Development

Wants U.S. economic sanctions lifted

The Foreign Ministry of North Korea issued a statement saying it might revive a state policy of nuclear development if the United States won’t lift economic sanctions that have been imposed on that country.

"If the U.S. keeps behaving arrogantly without showing any change in its stand, while failing to properly understand our repeated demand, the DPRK may add one thing to the state policy for directing all efforts to the economic construction adopted in April and as a result, the word 'pyongjin' may appear again," the statement reads, referring to North Korea’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. [Ed. Note: No definition for pyongjin was discovered.]

In late September, it was reported that a second summit between President Trump and North Korean Chairman Kim Jong Un was likely to be held “after October.” To this time, no date has been set for that meeting.

Sources: The Hill, BBC News
AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his negotiators as they work to secure a second summit between President Trump and Chairman Kim.
  • That the North Korean government will be restrained from restarting its nuclear program.

Thursday, November 08, 2018

President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are taking part in the formal investiture ceremony of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. While Justice Kavanaugh has served on the court since his confirmation last month, today’s ceremony is part of a long-standing tradition where a newly confirmed justice walks the steps of the Supreme Court alongside the chief justice. During their time at the High Court, the president and first lady will meet and speak with the sitting Supreme Court Justices.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions tendered his resignation yesterday at President Trump’s request. The president appointed Session’s Chief of Staff Matthew G. Whitaker as Acting Attorney General as he evaluates potential nominees. The president said, “We thank Attorney General Jeff Sessions for his service, and wish him well! A permanent replacement will be nominated at a later date.”

AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For the president and first lady as they meet with Supreme Court Justices today.
  • For Justice Kavanaugh as he takes part in the formal investiture ceremony.
  • For God to be with Acting Attorney General Whitaker as he steps into this new role.
  • For wisdom for the president as he evaluates candidates for the position of Attorney General.

The President's Schedule

  • 9:30AM EST The President and THE FIRST LADY depart the White House en route to the Supreme Court of the United States
  • 9:45AM EST The President and THE FIRST LADY participate in a meet and greet with Supreme Court Justices
  • 10:00AM EST The President and THE FIRST LADY attend the investiture of the Honorable Brett Kavanaugh
  • 10:20AM EST The President and THE FIRST LADY depart the Supreme Court of the United States en route to the White House
  • 10:30AM EST The President and THE FIRST LADY arrive at the White House
  • 11:00AM EST The President meets with the Secretary of State

Praying for Leaders After the Midterms

Be constant in prayer for the nation's leaders

The people of America voted, ballots were counted, and results broadcast. Election Day 2018 is now a day in history.

Perhaps your favored candidates won. Perhaps the votes for them failed to meet your hopes or expectations. Either way, it is incumbent upon those who claim a personal relationship with Christ to follow the advice of Romans 12:12, “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.”

Indeed, it is through prayer that your own heart will find rejoicing or comfort, according to your need. Furthermore, the mandate of 1 Timothy 2:1-2 to pray for those in authority over you has not been canceled by the Lord.

In all things, remind yourself that God is on the Throne of Heaven, and His will shall prevail. His plans are already in place.

“The king’s heart is a stream of water in the land of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will. Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the heart” (Proverbs 21:1-2).

Join with us today as we pray:

O Sovereign Lord, bring about Your perfect will in this nation. Do just as You intend and give us faith and understanding to relinquish our wills to Yours. We thank You that we can rejoice because we continue to have hope for America. Help us to not only be patient when events take unexpected turns, but to ever look to You to turn the hearts of the nation’s leaders to do Your will. Remind us in Your grace and mercy to be constant in prayer, interceding for those who will be our Senators and Representatives, that they might do what is right in Your eyes, O Lord.  Help us to pursue righteousness and kindness in the days and years ahead, for the sake of our testimony in Jesus Christ, Amen.

Sources: The Presidential Prayer Team
AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For those who are newly elected as they step into their new roles of public office, that God would be at work in their hearts and that they would accomplish the will of God.
  • For those who retained their position as they continue their role, that they would have a renewed desire to pursue God's desires for them in how they should vote, lead, or represent the people of the nation.
  • In thanksgiving for the opportunity and right that we have to take part in the election process.

PRAYER ALERT - Shooting in Thousand Oaks, California

PRAYER ALERT - 12 fatalities and multiple injuries reported at nightclub shooting

Wednesday evening, a gunman opened fire in a crowded bar in Thousand Oaks, California. 12 fatalities and multiple injuries were reported, including a veteran sergeant in the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office who was killed responding to the scene. The gunman was found dead inside after authorities secured the building.

President Donald Trump spoke of the shooting both condemning the attack and adding, “God bless all of the victims and families of the victims.”

Information regarding the shooting is still coming in as more of those wounded are being treated.

Sources: Washington Post, NBC, MSN, Fox News, ABC
AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For comfort and healing for the victims and the families of the victims as they recover from this tragedy.
  • For wisdom for local law enforcement as they continue to investigate.
  • For guidance for the president and federal leaders as they respond to the shooting.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are in Paris, France, today. They will take part in ceremonies commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Armistice that saw an end to the First World War. The president and first lady will meet with world leaders during their time in Paris.

In addition, the president will likely hold meetings with many European leaders as the U.S. and European partners are still in the midst of trade talks. Other topics for meetings will include regional security in response to rising tensions with Russia, the Iran nuclear agreement, and a postwar roadmap for Syria. In spite of their differences, President Trump and French President Macron vowed to work together to tackle the issues that both nations share.  

In the U.S., many elections around the nation are still too close to call and election officials are working overtime to verify the ballots to ensure accuracy. Some states expect that the final tally may not come until the middle of next week.

AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For God to use the memory of World War I to draw the world together to the goal of peace.
  • For wisdom for the president as he meets with President Macron to discuss mutual concerns.
  • For guidance for the president to know which issues need the most attention and for understanding as to how to address them.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Today, President Donald Trump is traveling to California to meet those who were affected by the deadly wildfires. Ahead of his visit, he said, “We mourn the lives of those lost and we pray for the victims. And there are more victims than anybody would ever even think possible. I want to thank the firefighters and FEMA and first responders for their incredible courage in the face of very grave danger.”

Earlier in the week, the president signed a disaster declaration granting federal aid to be sent to California as part of rescue and recovery efforts. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke said, "It's going to take working together from the community all the way up to federal government and making sure that we do active forest management, we prioritize infrastructure, public safety, the roads, evacuation, and work together as a team.”

At the time of publishing, nearly 70 people have died as a result of the fires and over 630 are still missing.

AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For safety for the president as he travels.
  • For wisdom for the president to know how to best help those who have suffered great loss in the fires.
  • For mercy and healing on those who have lost loved ones and for those who lost livelihoods.

Troops Aid California

Arrive in California to aid in search for wildfire survivors

Military troops from a base in Washington are being trained, quickly, in firefighting. 200 Troops will be assisting in the termination of California’s wildfires. The U.S. Northern Command released a statement that “The soldiers will be outfitted with wildland fire Personal Protective Equipment and all of the gear they will need to serve as wildland firefighters.”

The wildfires across California have already taken at least 50 lives, and over 100 people are missing.

Sources: Military.Com
AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • That these troops are able to provide excellent aid, safely, and put out the fires quickly.
  • For the members of the Air National Guard and Army National Guard who have already been working to fight these 127 wildfires across more than 6,000 acres.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are planning to stay at the White House in Washington D.C., today. Following their trip to California to visit areas affected by the fires and meet with those affected by the deadly wildfires, they are expected to rest and do not have any public events scheduled for the day.

The president has a lot of work ahead on the agenda this week. The U.S. and North Korea are continuing work towards a second summit between President Trump and North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un. The president is hopeful for progress in U.S. and China negotiations towards a trade agreement. Both houses of Congress began sessions last week. They will continue to work up until the end of the year on a variety of legislative issues.

AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For rest and rejuvenation for the president and first lady as they stay in the White House today.
  • For wisdom for the many members of the administration working on issues such as foreign policy.
  • For Congress as they work on issues for the remainder of this year’s term.

President Faces Many Challenges

President Faces Many Challenges

Prayer is encouraged for the President’s continued perseverance

President Donald Trump is currently in the midst of managing several different challenging issues plaguing our world. The murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul has thrown the US Middle East policy into an uproar. In addition to this, the US has joined with Britain to work toward ending the war in Yemen. The President is also looking toward a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and a meeting with Vladimir Putin at a summit in Argentina. He will be heading to the G20 summit at the end of November and is expected to discuss trade policies with China.

As the head of state and the head of government, as well as the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, President Trump faces a multitude of decisions and expectations daily. At busy times like this, the very nature of the President’s job can lead him to feel isolated or overwhelmed.

Sources: CNN, the White House
AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For added support, encouragement, and rest for the President in the coming months as the country looks to him to make important decisions
  • That God would grant President Trump wisdom and discernment to make wise decisions

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, and the first family are in Palm Beach, Florida, today. They will be celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday and spending time together this week. They are staying at the president’s Mar-a-Lago home for the first time since April when the president hosted Japan’s President Shinzo Abe. The president’s holiday itinerary is not publicly available at this time.  

While Congress is not in session this week, lawmakers are preparing to work on a spending bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies. To avoid a partial government shutdown, Congress will be picking up the issue as soon as they return at the beginning of next week. December 7th is the deadline for Congress to pass the bill and for the president to sign it.

AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For rest and rejuvenation for the president and first family as they spend time together this week.
  • For safety for members of Congress, judges, and executive leaders that are traveling to be with family during the holiday.
  • For encouragement for those in government who are spending Thanksgiving away from family and loved ones.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

In 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln called on America to set a day apart for thanksgiving and remembrance of the blessings of God. His proclamation read, “The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God.”

On this day, we give thanks to the Almighty God for His steadfast love, overflowing grace, and peace that is beyond understanding.

President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, their son Barron, and other members of the first family are spending Thanksgiving Day at their Mar-a-Lago, Florida, home. Their schedule is not public at this time.

Vice President Mike Pence and Second Lady Karen Pence are celebrating the holiday in Mississippi. They are spending the day with their son, Marine 2nd Lt. Michael J. Pence, who is stationed at the Naval Air Station Meridian with Training Air Wing One.

AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For rest and rejuvenation for the president and first family as they spend the holiday together.
  • For grace for the vice president and second lady as they spend time with their son today.
  • In thanksgiving for the blessings of God and for the sending of His Son in order that mankind might be saved.

Friday, November 23, 2018

President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, and the first family are continuing their stay at their Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida. The first family’s holiday itinerary is not publicly available at this time, but they are expected to spend time together both relaxing and enjoying each other's company.

While Americans across the nation look for deals on merchandise as part of the unofficial holiday of Black Friday, the president and his administration are working on a revamped trade deal with China. The president is meeting with China’s President Xi at the G20 Summit in Argentina next week, but trade officials from both nations will be working to reach an agreement ahead of the summit.

AS THE LORD LEADS, PRAY WITH US:
  • For rest and rejuvenation for the president and first family as they spend time together this week.
  • For wisdom for the president and administration officials as they continue to negotiate a new trade agreement.
  • For God to be glorified through any new trade deal.

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