By Toni Ford
I’m not sure about you, but I can hardly watch the news or spend any time on social media these days due to all the harsh and judgmental words being spoken and written about others. I was actually sharing with a friend yesterday how quick the news and social media can cause me to become anxious or what I call, “in a wad.”
This week, I read I Timothy 2:1-6, which says, “I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth. For there is only one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity – the man Christ Jesus. He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time.”
Those last five words caused me to stop and think, “Wow, how true is it that the message in those verses could not be more applicable for what our world needs in our present day and age.” This same message that Timothy shared with the church thousands of years ago is exactly the same message that we believers need to hear again today, for it is a message for now, at “just the right time.”
So what is it exactly that our world needs now, in this day and at this time? We need to:
Pray for ALL people. Timothy’s first request to the church was to pray for ALL people. He didn’t specify, call out or define a certain group, but rather “urged” (the meaning this is of utmost importance) us to be praying for ALL people. Timothy continues with instructions on how we should be praying for others, which is to “ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf and give thanks for them.” Thanksgiving is actively choosing to call forth what is good. It is blessing those around you instead of cursing. It is an act of worship. It is a way to express to someone that they are loved, valued and seen by God. If we are to pray for ALL people, that means we pray for those we care for as well those we don’t care for, and even for those who don’t care for us! The lack of compassion and grace in our conversations online, on TV and in person is wearing down our hearts. If there ever was a “right time” to intercede for others, it would be now!
Pray for those in authority. Timothy tells us to pray specifically for those in authority. When we do, it can lead to a peaceful and quiet life. In this day and time, I believe our spirits are groaning and our hearts are longing for peace and quiet in all godliness and holiness. When looking for words to describe this year, both globally and personally, “peace and quiet” are not the first two words that leap to mind. 2020 has been a year of fear, chaos, disruption and loss. Regardless of whether we like or agree with our authority, we are to pray for them. When we do so, it can’t help but lead to peace. When we do not, it leads to more unrest and division.
Recognize that Christ is the only way. We see a piece of God’s heart and character in these verses. It is His desire that everyone be saved and understand the truth that only through Christ Jesus can man be reconciled to God. It isn’t about our works or how much we “do” for God. Rather, it is all about what Christ has done for us through His death and resurrection. This is the greatest recognition man can make, and if there was ever a time our world needed to be reconciled to God, it is now!!
Oh Lord, today I ask you to speak to every person alive on this earth. Most of all, I ask you to remove their blinders and help them see that You alone are the only that can bring salvation. It is Your heart to see All people be saved, but You are a gentleman and You will not force Yourself on anyone. So please draw them to see You and their need for You! Then, I ask you to change our hearts, both as a people and as a nation. Please draw us to pray for ALL people and in all positions, whether we like them, agree with them or even know them. Use us to be Your vessel through which the love of God can flow and bring peace, Your peace back to our world. Thank you for loving us from the very beginning.
If you would like me to join you in prayer please email me at email@example.com. I would love to pray for you!