People pray. Hindus pray. Moslems pray. Even I suspect the odd atheist pray. There is something in the human psyche where at some point or other in the course of our lives, we pray. This is not to suggest that everyone prays to God, or that we pray for the same things. Yet we pray.
What do we pray for? What do you pray for? What often comes to your mind and provokes you to pray? Whatever seems important to us is often what we pray for. It might be for good results in an exam if we are a student. It could be for a boyfriend or girlfriend if we are single. The health of a child, if we are a parent. It can be for resources if we are in financial hardship, for wisdom if we are faced with a difficult decision. Our prayers can mirror our values and priorities in life.
When Paul wrote to his young friend Timothy, he asked him to pray this way:
“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 Saviour, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2: 1-4).
Did you notice what Paul is concerned about? He is concerned about the way we live, how this is pleasing to God and that people would come to know God. He urges us to pray for something else; for kings and all those in authority. These are the people who lead our communities and nation. These are the people who so often shape legislation and culture.
When you pray next, can I encourage you to take Paul’s advice and pray for those in authority. Pray that they might know Christ. Pray that their families might be protected. Pray for wisdom and justice to guide their decision making.
Will you pray for the “kings and all those in authority”?