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NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER

Bob Sperlazzo,
INFORMED CHRISTIAN DIGEST
MAY 1, 2003

A Day of Humiliation, Fasting and Prayer

We can all pray. We all should pray. We should ask the fulfillment of God's will. We should ask for courage, wisdom, for the quietness of soul which comes alone to them who place their lives in His hands.
--President Harry Truman

"The National Day of Prayer is a simple yet very effective way to introduce Christians to the Holy Spirit's prayer movement. Everyone can "Take 5" to pray -- at their office desk, at their school locker, at their kitchen sink. Every church building can be open for prayer throughout the day. Every community of churches can gather in the evening to praise and pray together (or pray with the televised National Concert of Prayer). Every pastor can invite nearby pastors to gather for an hour of prayer for our nation. Every family can focus their mealtime prayers on the spiritual needs of our nation." --Pastor Phil Miglioratti, National Pastors' Prayer Network (www.nppn.org)

"I believe the National Day of Prayer is essential for Believers to participate in and to stand in the gap for our nation. It's essential that we repent for the sins of our nation and seek God's face so that He will heal our land." --Beverly Pegues, Director, Christian Information Network (www.christian-info.com)


Press Release, National Day of Prayer
America United Under God
Mark Fried

51st Annual National Day of Prayer theme is a poignant reminder of the tragedy that brought together a nation.

(Colorado Springs) As our service men and women defend the United States in distant lands and families try to heal from the tragedies of September 11, the National Day of Prayer (NDP) invites millions of Americans to once again join hands across denominational lines for a day of prayer on May 2. The Scripture verse adopted for the 2002 observance, "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1), is especially meaningful given the world's instability and the promise of an uncertain future.

"The American psyche was rocked by the horrific evil perpetrated on September 11 and many have sought meaning, security and spiritual comfort in its wake," said Mrs. Shirley Dobson, Chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force. "It's no surprise that Americans have drawn closer to God as our country's forefathers did when faced with unseen enemies and unrest. As citizens humbly petition our Creator, asking His blessing, guidance and healing on our land, we are confident they will receive grace and the power to defend our freedoms."

NDP organizers expect the crowds to be unprecedented, far surpassing the millions who attended the 30,000 events held nationally last year. Participants will gather at courthouses, businesses, around school flagpoles, in places of worship and public arenas. Dr. Lloyd Ogilvie, Chaplain of the United States Senate, has written a prayer that will be read at noon; the President will authorize a special proclamation; and all 50 governors are expected to sign documents recognizing the occasion.

"Now more than ever, it's imperative to pray for our leaders," said Mrs. Dobson. "We're hoping the first Thursday in May will be a date when many recommit to regularly beseeching God to provide protection, peace and direction for our country, our president and all those who must make crucial decisions."

The National Day of Prayer tradition dates back to February 19, 1795, when President George Washington issued a proclamation setting aside a day of public thanksgiving. An annual day of prayer was established by Congress in 1952 and specifically designated in 1988 as the first Thursday in May.

Source Copyright 2003 National Day of Prayer Task Force. All Rights Reserved. International Copyright Secured.

Christianity Today
www.christianitytoday.com


Intercessors For America
On Watch in Washington
Using the May 1st National Day of Prayer

April 17, 2003 - Special Edition Jim Weidmann

"Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people." --Prov 14:34

National Day of Prayer Task Force

Over the past few years, we have seen God moving in powerful ways. Churches are using the common ground of prayer, crossing denominational lines as a loving and united Body. Not only are congregations going outside their church walls, but also they are using events like the annual National Day of Prayer as an occasion to spark new prayer efforts in their communities.

For example, several churches in Parsippany, New Jersey began planning a citywide prayer observance for last year's National Day of Prayer. In the months leading up to the event, the organizers met on a regular basis to pray for their city and for their event. And now, all of the church representatives involved meet once a month to pray for their community.

This is our vision for how the Church can use the National Day of Prayer! Please allow me to share a few simple ideas on how you can make this vision a reality in your city.

First, teach the people of your local church to pray. For prayer warriors, it is sometimes difficult to understand that prayer intimidates many people. For powerful prayers, approaching God's throne can be second nature. But, many people sitting in pews on Sunday don't know where to start, have no idea what to say and have false expectations. This is common. Remember, Jesus' disciples said, "Lord, teach us to pray" and that was late in the Lord's ministry. Use the upcoming National Day of Prayer as an opportunity to further introduce the concept of meaningful prayer to your church body.

Next, help bring your church into prayer on a regular basis. The Bible says, "For my house will be a house of prayer." A great way to teach your congregation how to be a house of prayer is to show that approaching God is not our last resort -- but our first response. I encourage you to use the National Day of Prayer as a time of corporate petitioning.

Youth "Freedom" Rallies

Christian youth across the U.S. will kick off the yearly observance on the eve of the National Day of Prayer (Wednesday, April 30) with Freedom rallies. The popular Christian rock band Third Day has teamed with the NDP Task Force to call America's youth to pray for their schools, their communities and this nation. The Freedom vision is for youth pastors and youth leaders to partner with young Christians to organize a student-led praise and worship event for teens. Prayer is the common ground for youth Freedom gatherings. (See www.ndptf.org)

Nationally Broadcast Concert of Prayer

Another wonderful and easy way to spark more corporate prayer is by gathering together in the evening of the NDP in your local church or with neighbors, tune in via radio or TV, and pray along with the three-hour 8-11 pm (EDT) Nationally Broadcast Concert of Prayer. Pray along live with believers at Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA, Detroit, MI and Washington, DC. (See www.concertofprayer.org)

"Carpe Diem"

Finally, the Church needs to come out from behind its walls. We are blessed to live in a country that, at least constitutionally, allows us the freedom to express our religious views in the public arena. However, the trend of removing God from all aspects of American public life has become increasingly disturbing, so the need to spiritually "carpe diem" [seize the day] has never been more evident.

President Ronald Reagan once said, "If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a Nation gone under." Whether it involves the Ten Commandments or our Pledge of Allegiance, there is a small number of people leading this movement to expel the Creator of the universe from society altogether. The National Day of Prayer provides an opportunity for the community of faith to take advantage of our freedom to worship and bring the Lord back into the public square.

As you can see, the National Day of Prayer is a unique opportunity for teaching, uniting and proclaiming the Hope found in prayer to those within your sphere of influence. We hope that you are able to use the annual National Day of Prayer to jump-start additional prevailing prayer efforts in your community. Let us truly carpe diem!


Jim Weidmann serves as Vice Chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force since 1997. Under the leadership of Shirley Dobson, he implements strategy and oversees the daily operations for NDP. For info see www.ndptf.org or phone 719-531-3379.

Information

To receive prayer alerts: Intercessors For America
Youth Interceeding For America

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