On this Election Day Eve, it is indeed profitable to lift up the election process and our nation in prayer. I have read two great pieces about praying for the upcoming election and our country: one from John Piper at Desiring God, and a piece about how to pray for the election by Albert Mohler. Above all else (like political involvement), those who call on the name of the Lord should do so at this time, and in the days to come. And through this process, let us examine ourselves as we examine the state of our nation and those who lead it.
Unfortunately, our system of government has led Americans (including Christians) to believe that we are the masters of our own destiny - we elect whom we want, and if we don't like someone in power, we vote him out of power. This gives us a sense of control when it comes to government. We believe that we have the final say. Also, there are many American Christians that separate their spiritual and political thoughts and opinions. This ought not to be. These two realities, however, have predisposed American Christians to, in large part, refrain from deep prayer when considering the political realm. Again, this ought not to be. As the two pieces linked above make clear, there is much to be prayed about when considering our country, our leaders, and even our own involvement in the political process.
How should we pray at this time? Albert Mohler suggests the following. And it should be noted that these prayer requests are appropriate for all times, not just during election cycles.
1. Pray that God will bless America with leaders who are better than we deserve.
2. Pray that Americans will be motivated to fulfill the responsibilities of citizenship, yet also that we will be stripped of an unhealthy and idolatrous confidence in the power of government to save us.
3. Pray that Americans will vote by conscience, not merely on the basis of celebrity or emotion.
4. Pray that Americans will vote to defend the least among us - and especially those who have not vote.
5. Pray that God will prick the conscience of the nation on issues of morality, righteousness, and respect for marriage as the central institution of human civilization.
6. Pray that God will protect the candidates and their families.
7. Pray that the election is conducted with honor, civility, respect, and justice.
8. Pray that Americans will be prepared to accept the results of the election with respect and kindness.
9. Pray that this election would lead to even greater opportunities to preach the gospel, and that the freedom of the church will be respected, honored, and protected.
10. Pray for the church - that she would be strengthened in the truth, grounded in the faith, and empowered for witness and ministry.