Millions of Americans joined together to observe the National Day of Prayer on May 4. Christians met in churches, parks, courthouses, capitol buildings, schools, while many watched the broadcast in their homes to intercede for the healing of America, the nation’s leaders, their communities and families, reports All Israel News.
This year’s theme is: “Pray fervently in righteousness and avail much,” based on the second part of James 5:16 which says, “The insistent prayer of a righteous person is powerfully effective.”
The 2023 National Day of Prayer carries an incredible amount of spiritual and moral weight as it pertains to the advancement of this idea we call the American experiment. —Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, senior pastor of the New Season Church in Sacramento, CA
Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, senior pastor of the New Season Church in Sacramento, California co-hosted this year’s National Day of Prayer broadcast by the National Day of Prayer Task Force. He asserted the importance of prayer in 2023 in American history.
“As a nation, we’ve never been down this road. It’s a road of moral relativism, a road of cultural decadence, unprecedented strife and discord,” Rodriguez said. “The 2023 National Day of Prayer carries an incredible amount of spiritual and moral weight as it pertains to the advancement of this idea we call the American experiment.”
Following several spiritual revivals in different parts of the country recently, Rodriguez said Americans are praying for hope and an awakening.
“We’re praying for an awakening in America. We are praying for unity. We are praying for repentance. We are praying for hope. We are praying for truth, to overcome the lies, for love, to silence hate and for America’s problems to become America’s testimony.”
President Joe Biden issued a proclamation the day before the occasion reminding Americans that “the right to pray is enshrined in our Constitution and stamped firmly in the American tradition.”
He stated, “The belief that prayer can move mountains is, at its core, a belief in making the impossible possible. There is nothing more American than believing in the endless possibilities of what we can do when we do it together.”
Faith leaders and politicians went to social media to remind Americans of the importance of prayers and seeking God to help the nation face the challenges at present and in the future.
Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis had a video message on Twitter saying, “On this National Day of Prayer, we thank God for our freedoms and for the many blessings He’s bestowed on America and on the state of Florida.”
Franklin Graham said, “As a nation we have turned our back on God and His Word, and we are seeing the results. Violence, crime, and suicide are rampant. As Christians, we need to be more intentional than ever about PRAYER. The Bible instructs us to make prayer a priority. Pray for our leaders—from the president, to those serving in Congress, to those in leadership at the state and local level—that God would give them wisdom, guide them, and have mercy on our nation.”
Greg Laurie, Harvest Christian Fellowship’s senior pastor, urged people to pray for America: “We are desperately in need of a spiritual awakening. It seems we have strayed so far from God’s plan and we are reaping the consequences. But things can change, as we pray for our nation and share our faith.”
Meanwhile, evangelist Nick Hall said the National Day of Prayer serves as a reminder for Americans to pray for its leaders. “The Bible commands us to pray for our leaders. No matter who’s in the White House, we know who’s on the throne. And, you know, I pray for President Biden and Vice President Harris every day, and I pray for wisdom. I pray for godly counsel,” he said.
The National Day of Prayer was created by the United States Congress in 1952 and signed into law by then-US President Harry Truman. The law was amended in 1988 to make every first Thursday of May the official date of the event.