All right. It’s Wednesday, the day after.
If you stayed up for the election returns last night, you’re experiencing something like a hangover today.
Donald Trump has been named President-elect of this country.
Like it or not, he won. And half the country does not like it, let us admit.
Which statement we could just as easily make if Hillary Clinton had been elected instead. Half the country either way. The very definition of divided.
I want to say a word to my friends who are trying to get their minds around this development which all the polls and most of the media said would not happen.
Next January, Donald Trump and his wife Melania will move into the White House and he into the Oval Office. Everything inside you weeps at the thought.
When friends (like me) urge you to pray for Mr. Trump as we are commanded, something inside you rebels at the thought.
Here are some reasons that may explain why some among us do not wish to pray for the man…
- You don’t like Mr. Trump.
- You didn’t vote for him.
- You dislike some of his staunchest supporters. They can surely be obnoxious.
- To you, he represents the worst in human nature and will lead this country poorly.
- You feel he doesn’t have the wisdom, maturity, self-control, and judgement to lead the free world. You’re probably right. (I’m not sure anyone does.)
- As for praying, you don’t feel your prayers would make a difference. The man is who he is.
- You often feel your prayers are weak. What good would they do?
- Somehow, you feel that group prayer would be more effective than soloing. Something about praying with others makes our prayers seem bigger, greater.
- You’ve prayed for leaders in the past and can’t see what that accomplished.
- To pray for Trump now would feel like admitting you were wrong in your judgement about the man, like you are throwing in the towel.
Any of that hit home? You’re human, like the rest of us, so I expect so.
Can I admit something here?
I did not vote for Barack Obama either time. And yet, he was my President, all eight years. I honored him constantly (I Peter 1:17 instructs us to honor the king) and I prayed for him often (I Timothy 2:1-2 instructs us to pray for the king and others in authority over us).
Christ-followers have our orders. Scripture is clear on this. Remember that when the Apostle Peter said to “honor the king,” Nero sat on the throne.
Donald Trump ain’t no Nero, thank the Lord.
So, you can do this. Maybe tomorrow moreso than today. It takes time for the awareness to settle in.
You will honor the President, and you will pray for him.
I believe in you.
There is one massive, over-riding reason for praying for Mr. Trump, and it is not just that we are commanded to do so, although that should be enough.
So much is riding on him getting this right. The stakes are so high. Not just this land, but millions throughout the world look to America’s leaders to do the right thing, to hold their rogue nation accountable, to stand up to the oppressors, to help the helpless. The opportunity is limitless, the responsibility enormous.
And Donald Trump is weak. He does not have what it takes to do this right. No one does.
Please don’t miss that. No. One. Does.
The job is too big, the pressures too great, the needs too overwhelming,
Scripture puts it bluntly. “I know, O Lord, that a man’s way is not in himself; Nor is it in a man who walks to direct his own steps” (Jeremiah 10:23).
That’s why you and I are going to pray for him.
Whether he asks for it or not, we will lift him in prayer. Whether he feels he needs it or not. Whether he ever knows it or appreciates it.
We will pray for him.
After all, “The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the Lord; He turns it wherever He wishes” (Proverbs 21:1).
And–this is a biggie–we will then leave the results with the Lord.
That is to say, we will not be checking the next day’s news to see if our prayers worked. You will not know in your lifetime what your prayers accomplished.
You never do.
You pray by faith. And that means, we pray believing in the Lord, asking Him to lead us in how to pray, and then we leave the results with Him.
When we get to Heaven, we will find out what our prayers accomplished.
But not before.
Is that enough for you? Can you do that? “We walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7).
Our Lord put it this way: “When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on earth?” (Luke 18:8).
Anyone can pray for those he loves and believes in. You and I will do that, but also for some we’re not quite sure about (smile please) and even for our enemies, as Jesus commanded in Luke 6:27ff.
We are Christians. We can do this.