Pray: Don’t Let the Answer Surprise You
by Andrew Zvaritch
“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.”
While reading this passage a while back, a truth jumped at me regarding prayer for leaders in authority. We like the phrase “that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty,” and we often feel it as a God-given duty to pray for leaders because we are to love our enemies. However, the missionary purpose of God and of His Word should be evident in the prayers of His people.
I was encouraged to read that, with specific respect to our authorities, God “will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.” Often we shy away from mentioning the names of leaders in prayer because we can almost feel like it is a mock of prayer to ask for something that “obviously will never happen.” Our faith can be strengthened when we see that God’s heart beats not only for the poor and downcast but also for the individual whose spiritual joy and inner peace has been crushed by fame and popularity.
The next time we go to the place of prayer, let us not feel shy or silly for asking something big from God. There are many instances in my own life where I have seen God save a person from sin, and I have felt a sense of shame that I had not been anticipating the help of God in their lives. Let us be encouraged and know that His heart yearns to work wondrous things, “which ye will not believe, though it be told you” (Habakkuk 1:5).