This Wednesday, March 14, 2018, thousands of students and teachers plan to walk out of class at 10 AM for 17 minutes to mark the one-month anniversary of the shootings at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that took the lives of fourteen students and three staff. The walk-out is also a cry against gun violence and a call for legislators to “do something” to protect our communities.
Let us make Wednesday a day of prayer for God to open hearts to honestly talk about this problem and seek solutions that will protect all without infringing on the legitimate rights of any.
If fasting helps you to focus your mind and bring your concerns before the Lord, I would encourage you to do that. Remember: fasting doesn’t have to be for the whole day. It could be skipping a single meal, or until school is out, or denying yourself something that you will miss during the day enough to remind you of your commitment to pray.
May you know God’s presence as you spend this time with him, and may we see a powerful difference in our communities as a result.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 6 AM.
And the Lord said, “I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the Lord, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. Exodus 33:19
Lord, it was your goodness that passed before Moses there in the wilderness when he was in the midst of the huge task of leading your people out of slavery and into the Land of Promise. May your goodness pass before us today. There is nothing we have done to deserve your mercy or your compassion, but we ask you to have mercy on us in this time of our need. Have compassion on us, your children.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 7 AM.
He will stand and shepherd his flock
in the strength of the Lord,
in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.
And they will live securely, for then his greatness
will reach to the ends of the earth. Micah 5:4
Oh, Good Shepherd, shepherd us! In the strength and majesty of the Lord our God, lead us, protect us, provide for us! We wander on the hills like lost and frightened sheep, hungry for the security of your presence. May your greatness reach into every town and city. May it invade the farms and wilderness areas to the end of the earth. Lead us out of our conflicts and partial solutions and into your peace.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 8 AM.
I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do. Luke 10:21
Father, children are speaking to us today, telling us things the wise and learned have not been able to see. Help us to listen. Help us to hear their pain over the loss of classmates, their fears for their own future, their ideas on how the problem of gun violence in our country might be eased. May we not turn them away without hearing what you have to say to us.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 9 AM.
The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
my shield and the horn of my salvation.
He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior--
from violent people you save me. 2 Samuel 22:2-3
Heavenly Father, we live in a scary world. Be a shield for the children who walk out today. May they trust not merely in legislative solutions to this problem of gun violence, but in you as their rock and their fortress. Save them today from violent people who would taunt them or plot evil against them. Be their stronghold and their refuge, and may they know that it is you who is their savior.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 10 AM.
But I have calmed and quieted myself,
I am like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child I am content. Psalm 131
Heavenly Father, I find myself so agitated when I watch the news or think on the things that have been happening. I want to yell and scream and knock sense into the people who don’t agree with me. How I long to trust you instead and be at peace like a little child in the arms of her mother. Help me to put my hope, not in "gun rights" or in "gun regulation," but in you, and to rest there.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 11 AM.
The Lord reigns forever;
he has established his throne for judgment.
He rules the world in righteousness
and judges the peoples with equity. Psalm 9:7-8
King of the universe, you still reign in the twenty-first century. Your throne is the ultimate place of judgment. Your rule is righteous and just. You do not judge by the color of skin or the color of the uniform. You do not judge by political party or position or by social influence. You judge with equity. Examine the hearts of your church. Expose our sin. Show us how we fail to meet your standard of righteousness, for the sake of your holy name, and lead us to repentance.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, noon.
Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care... So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Matthew 10:29, 31
Lord Jesus, our children are frightened. They have heard stories of terrible things that have happened in schools; they practice lock-down drills with their classmates; their innocence has been shattered. Oh, Lord, we beseech you. May it never happen again. Keep them safe from twisted minds that would take their lives for a moment of feeling powerful or a few minutes of fame. Reassure our children of your constant care, your presence with them even in the midst of danger. May fear not paralyse them.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 1 PM.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts” Isaiah 55.8-9
Lord, there is so much we don’t understand. Give your wisdom to our teachers and school administrators. Give them insights into children who might pose a threat to themselves or to others and wisdom to know how to handle the situation so that all will be safe. Show them the most effective ways to keep schools places of safety and learning, recognizing that different communities might find different methods to be appropriate for them.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 2 PM.
When he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth... He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. John 16:13-14
Spirit of Truth, we need you. We live in an age of information, but have lost sight of what really matters. Enemies seek to deceive us and put us at odds with one another. Voices cry one thing and another, and we have lost our capacity to recognize who is right. We confuse fake news with reality. Help us to discern what glorifies you from what drags your name in the gutter. Guide us into all truth as you have promised.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 3 PM
In the Lord’s hand the king’s heart is a stream of water
that he channels toward all who please him. Proverbs 21.1
Lord, we have lost confidence in our political leaders. To often they seem to betray us. But you have told us that their hearts are in your hands. You are able to direct their thinking into channels that will cause them to look on your people with favor. We call out for you to do this. Change the hearts of our leaders so that they will put the good of this nation before party loyalty, righteousness ahead of political expedience.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 4 PM.
You are righteous, Lord,
and your laws are right.
The statutes you have laid down are righteous;
they are fully trustworthy. Psalm 119:137-8
Your laws are right, Lord. Their principles can be trusted even thousands of years after they were first written down. But our world is constantly changing. Laws that worked two hundred years ago do not meet our current needs. Give our legislators wisdom to craft new laws that will protect us and our children, while not trampling on legitimate rights, and give them courage to stand up to those who would pressure them to go against conscience.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 5 PM.
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. Matthew 7:13-15
Lord, the easy thing to do today is to rant and scream one’s position and call those who disagree names. Help us to choose the narrow way: to listen thoughtfully, speak wisely; act graciously and focus our trust in you. May this country not go down to destruction, but find the road that leads to life.
Meet at His Feet; a day of fasting and prayer for our nation, 6 PM.
Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. Hebrews 13:20-21
God of peace, equip us, your servants, to do your will and not our own. Give us wisdom to see what is right in this riot of conflicting opinions. Give us courage to speak your words. Give us patience to devise solutions that work for all in our communities. Fill us with love to reach out to the fearful and those in pain from tragedy. There is a battle going on for the soul of this nation. May every step your people take be pleasing to you. And in the end we will give all the glory for the victory to our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
[Click here for last month's prayers for our country in this critical time of opportunity for change.]