Timely Ways to Pray for the USA

With all that’s going on in America this year, have you ever felt discouraged about the state of our nation? I know that Mary and I have. In the late spring, and into the summer, we were feeling stressed. Truth be told, we’d felt like that for a few months. We both had a lot of changes going on in our lives, even without Covid-19, the election, and the chaos in our cities.

Called to Hope

However, as the summer progressed, God was drawing us back to the basics, and one of the things that meant was back to our Only By Prayer website. We did a major revamp of the site and went into a planning frenzy. As we sought Him for what that looked like, God reminded us that Jesus calls us to be people of hope and to faint not. One powerful tool that we always have when we need to fight the enemy and his schemes is prayer. Rather than despairing of ever seeing things change for the better, God reminded us to be a catalyst of change for the better.

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. ‘The lord is my portion,’ says my soul. ‘Therefore I hope in Him.’

Lamentations 3: 22-24 NKJ

Pray for the USA

Patiently, He impressed upon us the importance to stop moping and to start praying for the USA more and to mobilize others to pray too. With that said, we’d like to give you an update on what’s in the works here at Only By Prayer so you can join us if you’d like. 

  1. Facebook prayer group. We revamped a Facebook group we started four years ago and renamed it Pray for the USA. We then launched an event called 5 Days to Fast and Pray for our Nation in August. To our surprise, as of October 2020, God has brought over 800 people to the group to pray. Thank you, Lord! We’d love to have you join us as well. It’s a non-partisan group, and we do not allow any political arguments on the page — just praying.
  2. October Event. We are ramping up for our next event on Pray for the USA: 5 Days to Pray for the Election. This is another virtual prayer event held on October 28, October 29, October 30, November 2, and November 3. We are adding 24-Hour Prayer to this event in addition to our daily prayer topics. Be sure to check out the details. 
  3. Pray for the USA Prayer book! As we were organizing the prayer group, we realized how hard it can be sometimes to pray specifically about issues that are happening in our country. Mary felt God leading us to write a 31-day book of prayers targeted to culturally relevant issues of our day. Again the Lord came through. We recently finished this short book called Pray for the USA, and it’s now available for sale on Amazon. You don’t have to have an actual Kindle tablet to read it. You can download the Kindle app for your phone or computer and read it that way. We think you’ll find it helpful to pray through the relevant issues of our day. It only takes about two minutes or so to pray each prayer. If you happen to be a member of Kindle unlimited, you can actually read Pray for the USA for free. If you do purchase it/read it, we’d love if you’d leave us a review on Amazon.
  4. ThanksLiving event. In November we are hosting our 12 Days to ThanksLiving event. It will run from Friday, November 13, to Tuesday, November 24. It will be held entirely on our website and is completely free. Details to follow soon.
  5. Advent devotion. In late November through December, we will be leading a group through our Advent devotional (also published on Kindle) called Advent-urous: Seeking Jesus in the Season of Advent . This starts on Sunday, November 29 and runs through December 24, with a bonus week after Christmas. 
  6. 3 Weeks to a Healthier You. In the works for January 11-29 is a new venture we are starting called 3 Weeks to a Healthier You, Body, Soul, and Spirit. More information to follow on this, but we are excited because the body segment will include an exercise program developed just for our group by certified fitness trainer Sarah Lewis. Sarah is also available for online training in these Covid times if you’e interested.

Join Us

Finally, we thank you for your support. We hope you join us for Pray for the USA and however many of the other events you wish. We’re excited for the upcoming months and how God is working in each of our lives during these difficult times. We pray He is encouraging you and your families too. Let us know if you have any questions in the comment section below. May God bless you!

Our latest book on Amazon called Pray for the USA
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Pray About the Coronavirus

At Only By Prayer, today we are praying on our online Facebook page about the Coronavirus. I have included the link below. Simply click on the link below and you will be taken to our Facebook page.

From there, please join in by adding your prayer in the comment section and responding to others’ prayers as the Lord leads you. You can check back throughout the day to add more prayers or read what has been posted. Thank you for praying about the Coronavirus with us.

Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday marks the start of the season of Lent on the Christian calendar. Lent is the time when believers prepare our hearts for the coming of Easter; it’s the time for reflecting on the sacrifice that Jesus made for each one of us when He went to the cross. We can do this in several ways:

  • Prayer
  • Repentance
  • Practice of spiritual disciplines
  • Attending services
  • Denying ourselves something (such as giving up a favorite food)

Let’s Humble Ourselves

On this first day of Lent, Ash Wednesday, we humble ourselves before God. Some faiths remind us of this by placing ashes on their congregants’ foreheads with the words, “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

In that spirit, we’d like to revisit a post we wrote previously to help you start Lent in a humble, reflective manner. Here is the link to the Ash Wednesday pdf:

Ash Wednesday

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comment section below, and we pray you and your loved ones have a blessed start to this season of Lent!

Reflections #14: Prayer Is Powerful

short meditations on scripture intersecting life

Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia. Daniel 10:12-13

Prayer is powerful.

It changes situations, people, and events. Daniel was one of the most faithful pray-ers in the Bible. We can take away much from his example. And we can get a bit of a behind-the-sceneslook as to what goes on when we pray.

Let’s dive into these two verses to see how they can impact our prayers today!

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Pray Like Hezekiah

I had something big happening in my life. Something hurtful. Something heartful.

Darkness was closing in.

I decided to pray like Hezekiah, so I ran to the temple to my Lord.

I got alone with Him and got on my knees and got humble and got truthful.

I spread out my hands and my heart and my bad news before my God, the King of kings.

GOD, do You see what they are doing?

Do You hear what they are saying?

Do you feel the ripping of their laughter on my soul? The whipping of their insults in my spirit? The stripping of their mocking on my heart?

I prayed like Hezekiah.

I reminded God of who He is– the Great I AM. I reminded God of who I am. I am I AM’s, His child.

I poured out my hurt and my hopes and my faith and asked God to act.

“The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.” Psalm 34:7

And He did.  One minute THEY were in my life, large and looming. The next minute THEY were gone. Silenced.

The prayer of Hezekiah. 30 seconds. 127 words. A nation is saved. Destiny shifts. Faith blooms. Who is like our God?

Pray like Hezekiah.

Have you prayed a Hezekiah prayer? Leave me a comment; I’d love to hear from you!

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Prayer Across America: Week 5

Welcome to Week 5 of Prayer Across America. If this is your first time joining us, you can read the introduction to understand the basics of what we are doing.

I am excited because as of this week, Mark has biked and I have driven the trailer 1100 miles, and we have traveled/prayed through Kentucky and are back in our home state of Indiana! We will actually be home on Friday for a two-week break before hitting the trail again on June 5 headed toward Denver. You can follow our progress and read stories about our trip at KickUpSomeDust.com.

Praying During Week 5

What’s on my heart this week to pray about? 

  1. Our schools. Let’s pray for God-honoring agendas, curriculum, and staff. The hearts and minds of our children are what’s at stake. As parents and concerned citizens, we need to pray for our schools and pay attention. We need to call and let our voices be heard when an agenda is being pushed that is harmful to our kids.
  2. Repentance. As a nation, we need to repent of pride and the sin that is dragging us down and away from God. Abortion is heavy on my heart.
  3. Revival. As I drive each day, I pray for individual hearts because that’s where revival starts. We need it to sweep across America.
  4. Delphi, Indiana. The murder of two best friends, 13-year-old Abby Williams and 14-year-old Liberty German back in February, remains unsolved. This tragedy occurred on a walking trail during the day. The girls went missing and their bodies were found the next day. Pray that the murderer will be found and brought to justice.
  5. Your Prayers. Please add anything God lays on your own heart too!

As always, please add your prayers to the comment section below. Thanks so much for joining us as we pray across America!

Beautiful Kentucky wildflowers.