Pray Prayer blog Political Musical Chairs There is a lot of change at the top – with a new PM by the end of the month and a new Liberal Democrat leader. Beyond that, there is the talk of a realignment in politics – with new parties emerging – more MPs going independent – and new alliances forming around Brexit. How do we pray? Your will be done– this is incredibly powerful, It is putting our political views to one side and praying for God’s will. This moves us beyond the political and into the spiritual Pray with thanksgiving– Paul challenges us when he encourages Timothy to pray for “kings and all those in authority” “with petitions, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving.” Thanksgiving reminds us that God is sovereign, it moves us from the world’s perspective of moaning, complaining and abusing politicians. Link the political with the spiritual– Paul tells us to pray our rulers will enable us to “live peaceful and quiet lives in all Godliness and holiness” – that is nice and specific! He continues – “This pleases God our saviour, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.” 1 Tim. 2: 1 – 4. God’s great heart is for salvation, for people to be freed from sin and brought to a lasting knowledge of Jesus. Let us get the politics in context– Brexit is not mentioned in the great commission! The core requirement on us is to “go and make disciples of all nations”. Our gospel is about salvation. Let us not get distracted from our priority. Avoid a “political spirit”– there are many spurious prophetic words and pictures that always – remarkably – seem to back and support someone’s previous political positions. We may not get a wholesome and righteous prime minister– Roman Emperors and Governors in Paul’s day were corrupt, insane, violent and murderous. Our leadership candidates are hopefully better! But Boris Johnson has been described as a moral vacuum, a consistent liar, a philanderer, and both he and Jeremy Hunt have made spending and policy commitments that are unlikely to be deliverable. But God– is sovereign. His heart is for the gospel. Often the gospel flourishes in nations with the appalling rulers, who become catalysts for more pray, and a deeper spiritual hunger. It’s not just the Conservatives– The Liberal Democrats are having a much lower key competition between Ed Davey and Jo Swinson – they are comfortable to go head to head and seem to retain respect and unity - and we pray for their choices. Keep alert– we could have a General Election within months, and possibly another referendum. We could see significant political, economic and social shaking. We are a nation of division, uncertainty, bitterness, and anger – so we pray for God’s people to bless the nation through unity, certainty in Jesus, generosity, and love, and deep peace. A few weeks ago I went to the little cottage where Lloyd George was raised in North Wales. History shows he was one of our most competent and successful Prime Ministers with a remarkable heart for justice and a capacity to lead the nation successfully in World War One. He was brought up to love the word of God by his Baptist Uncle and was a prime mover in the Balfour declaration which leads to the creation of Israel. But he became agnostic and was also a notorious philanderer, and lived at Number 10 with his mistress, he was a key instigator of the “cash for honours” scandal. Was he God’s choice for Prime minister? I believe he was, it reminds us that God’s ways are not our ways. Final comment– we must pray. This is a critical time for our nation, we are being shaken. We believe God has his hand of promise on us. There is a deep call for us to be alert, to watch and pray. These are very special times for the UK, God is shaking us and preparing us for new freedom for the gospel. Let us keep the simple prayer – “Your will be done, your kingdom come” in the forefront of our minds and wait on God to direct our prayers deeper.