In my role as Executive Director for the Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation, I have the wonderful privilege of witnessing the courage of hundreds of government leaders all over the United States. I also realize the vital importance of encouraging those who serve and those who benefit from that service—to continue championing and believing in one another. Now, more than ever, we must stand together. We must not allow detractors and the unrelenting criticism of the anti-faith movement to undermine our hard fought victories. Nothing would make the opposition happier than for us to lose focus and take our eyes off the real target. Everything…everything is at stake.
The government leaders who are members of the American Prayer Caucus Network are among my heroes because of their selfless and determined efforts on behalf of religious liberty. Their statesmanship is evident each time they work in a bipartisan way. When the armchair quarterbacks and the disgruntled vent frustration toward Washington and their state houses, I am reminded that it is always easier to criticize the “war” in the relative safety of distance, far from the frontline battles. When our Network leaders are lumped together in broad displeasure over all things political, they remain unapologetic in their faith…they pray and study God’s Word together as brothers and sisters in Christ and honor the Judeo-Christian values that have been the cornerstone of America. I am grateful they vigorously defend our freedoms and have inspired over 100,000 prayer partners and thousands of Room 219 Prayer Groups all across the country.
The psalmist echoes this sentiment: “Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will do it. He will bring forth your righteousness as the light and your judgment as the noonday” (Ps. 37:3-6).
Through their steady leadership, fifteen state caucuses have been established within the Network and we believe this number will continue to grow in the months ahead. What great joy it has been to watch over 400 legislators boldly stand in their various state capitols—united in message and purpose—to publically proclaim their commitment to God and call America back to prayer. Be encouraged because we now have a strong voice in the national discourse and are keeping our Judeo-Christian heritage alive in the marketplace of ideas.
However, our government leaders simply cannot accomplish their goals without your dedication and commitment. Many of you have been Praytriots in every sense of the word. Thank you for being the church…especially those of you who have written letters of support to your Congressmen and women and your state representatives, even when a particular issue or legislative bill gets sidetracked in the tangle of bureaucracy. You are like Aaron and Hur, lifting up the arms of those whom God has called to fearlessly speak truth within the halls of power. “With good men in authority, the people rejoice” (Prov. 29:2a).
Through all our activity, the rise and fall of passionate causes and heartfelt emotion…through all of our wants and desires, hopes and dreams, we must be like Abraham Lincoln who said, “I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go.”
The venerable statesman, Benjamin Franklin, got it right. During the Constitutional Convention in 1787, delegates had been meeting for five weeks and deliberations were at the threshold of a stalemate. Franklin, then 81, offered timely counsel.
“We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings that, ‘except the Lord build the House, they labour in vain that build it.’ I firmly believe this and I also believe that without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building no better, than the builders of Babel. We shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and byword down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing governments by human wisdom and leave it to chance, war and conquest. I therefore beg leave to move-that henceforth, prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business.”
So, we will continue to march forward—shoulder to shoulder—purposed in our will and putting our trust and confidence in God whom we all serve.
It was late October, 1941 and the world was embroiled in a second global conflict. British Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill, was visiting the boys at Harrow School, his old alma mater. Widely regarded as one of the greatest wartime leaders of the last century, Churchill stepped to the podium and in his speech, passionately delivered these stirring words: “Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never – in nothing, great or small, large or petty – never give in, except to convictions of honor and good sense.”
May the Lord’s blessings be with you. Together we stand—together we serve!