Wednesday, April 30, 2014

National Day of Prayer to be observed tomorrow on courthouse steps

Tomorrow, May 1st all across this great nation hundreds of Americans will be gathering at state buildings, courthouses, city halls, parks, church's or just about any place imaginable and accessible to observe the 63rd Annual National Day of Prayer.

The Love Center Church Evangelistic Outreach Ministry has announced plans to hold the local observance from 11:45am - 12:15pm on the steps of the Franklin County Courthouse and has invited the Franklin County community to come out and join them. For more information on the local observance contact Evangelist Alma Pugh, Associate Pastor at the Love Center Church and event coordinator at (850) 370-6465.

Days of prayers has its origin in this country dating back to 1775, when the Continental Congress designated a time for prayer while building the foundation of this great nation. The observance was formalized in 1952 by the United States Congress, and every year since the president has signed a proclamation encouraging all Americans to pray on this day.

The National Day of Prayer Task Force chose "One Voice, United in Prayer", as the 2014 theme, which places emphasis on the need for individuals, corporately and individually, to place their faith in the unfailing character of their Creator, who is sovereign over all governments, authorities, and men.

The Task Force also named Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of Christian Evangelist Billy Graham as its 2014 Honorary Chair.  As such, Mrs. Graham Lotz wrote the following prayer for the occasion that will be simultaneously read throughout the nation at noon May 1st (EDT).

"Lord of the Universe. Lord of this planet. Lord of the nation. Lord of our hearts. On this National Day of Prayer, we look to You
In the darkness, You are our Light.
In the storm, You are our Anchor.

In our weakness, You are our Strength. In our grief, You are our Comfort.
In our despair, You are our Hope.
In our confusion, You are our Wisdom. In time of terrorism, You are our Shield. In time of war, You are our Peace.

In times of uncertainty, You are the Rock on which we stand.

We make our prayer to You using the words of the prophet Daniel:

O Lord, You are the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant of love with those who love Him and keep His commandments. You are merciful and forgiving. You are righteous, but this day we are covered with shame because we have sinned againstYou, and done wrong. We have turned away from Your commands and principles. We have turned away from You.

Yet You have promised in 2 Chronicles 7, that if we–a people identified with You–would humble ourselves, pray, seek Your face, and turn from our wicked ways, then You would hear our prayer, forgive our sin and heal our land.

So we choose to stop pointing our finger at the sins of others, and examine our own hearts and lives. We choose to acknowledge our own sin–our neglect and defiance and ignorance and even rejection of You. This day we choose to repent.

In response to our heartfelt repentance, God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Father of Jesus Christ, in keeping with all Your righteous acts and according to Your promise, turn away Your anger and Your wrath from the United States of America. Hear the prayersand petitions offered to You on this National Day of Prayer, as we give You our full attention. Give ear, our God, and hear; open Your eyes and see. We do not make requests of You because we are righteous, but because of Your great mercy.

For the glory of Your Name hear our prayer, forgive our sin, and heal our land.

We ask this in the name of Your Son Jesus Christ who offers us salvation from Your judgment, forgiveness for our sin, and reconciliation with You through His own blood shed on the Cross. Amen".