National Day of Prayer 2021
America’s National Day of Prayer is a national treasure. Our nation has known from its foundations we must call on the Name of the Lord to remain secure in His protection and blessing.
President George Washington said, “It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.”1
When challenged as to the Christian roots of America, many believers like to quote President John Adams, who boldly stated, “We recognize no sovereign but God, and no king but Jesus!”2
U.S. President Andrew Jackson, president from 1829 to 1837, made a humble appeal to heaven which clearly revealed the heart of early America: “Finally, it is my most fervent prayer to that Almighty Being before whom I now stand, and who has kept us in His hands from the infancy of our Republic unto the present day, that He will so overrule all my intentions and actions and inspire the hearts of my fellow-citizens that we may be preserved from dangers of all kinds and continue forever a united and happy people.”3
America’s history reveals that this presidential acknowledgement of God did not stop as we moved into the modern age. President John F. Kennedy sought the blessing of the Lord on our nation at the National Day of Prayer in 1962. He asked the Lord to bless “our homes, that this integral unit of society may nurture our youth and give to them the needed faith in God, in our Nation, and in their future; our citizens, that they may increase in the desire to promote mercy and justice, peace and freedom, good will and brotherhood; our Nation, that each new achievement may add to our heritage of faith.”4
In 1983 at the National Day of Prayer in Washington, D.C., President Ronald Reagan reminded the nation of its need of and reliance on God. He proclaimed, “From General Washington’s struggle at Valley Forge to the present, this Nation has fervently sought and received divine guidance as it pursued the course of history. This occasion provides our Nation with an opportunity to further recognize the source of our blessings, and to seek His help for the challenges we face today and in the future.”5
Last year’s National Day of Prayer was held during COVID-19 lockdowns. While a nation struggled, President Donald J. Trump reminded our country of God’s faithfulness and commitment to us. He declared, “In every part of our country, we’ve seen the grace of God through the love and devotion of our fellow citizens as scripture assures us, ‘The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save.’ Think of that. ‘The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save’”6 (Zephaniah 3:17; ESV).
So today, we celebrate another National Day of Prayer. We turn to the Lord, humble ourselves, repent of our personal and national sin, and pray together in unity, asking Him to heal our land, just as we have since America’s beginning.
“The National Day of Prayer is a vital part of our heritage. Since the first call to prayer in 1775, when the Continental Congress asked the colonies to pray for wisdom in forming a nation, the call to prayer has continued through our history, including President Lincoln’s proclamation of a day of ‘humiliation, fasting, and prayer’ in 1863. In 1952, a joint resolution by Congress, signed by President Truman, declared an annual national day of prayer. In 1988, the law was amended and signed by President Reagan, permanently setting the day as the first Thursday of every May. Each year, the president signs a proclamation, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day. Last year, all 50 state governors plus the governors of several U.S. territories signed similar proclamations.
“The National Day of Prayer has great significance for us as a nation as it enables us to recall and to teach the way in which our founding fathers sought the wisdom of God when faced with critical decisions. It stands as a call for us to humbly come before God, seeking His guidance for our leaders and His grace upon us as a people. The unanimous passage of the bill establishing the National Day of Prayer as an annual event, signifies that prayer is as important to our nation today as it was in the beginning.”7
The theme for this year’s National Day of Prayer is Love, Life, and Liberty. NDP Task Force President Kathy Branzell explains the decision to choose this theme for 2021:
“First and foremost, people need to hear the message and experience the love of our Lord Jesus Christ. All have sinned and fall short, but God’s arm is not short, and we have been sent to show and share His message of LOVE, LIFE, and LIBERTY.
“Before God even spoke, ‘Let there be…,’ He loved you and me. God is LOVE. We are surrounded by the hurting, hopeless, and helpless who have never experienced the love of God. God designed and defines love, real love; unconditional, authentic love that sent His Son to pay our sin-debt in full so that we could believe in Him and have everlasting, abundant LIFE.
“Whether it is an unborn child, the homeless or hungry, orphans and widows, or others who are vulnerable, all need compassion. Everyone needs to know that they were lovingly created by God. He loved them so much He put His image in them and authored their value and purpose, which no person can take away from them. As followers of Jesus, we must share this message of love and life, so all can come to repentance. May none perish, but all know liberty and freedom from the stain and shame of sin. God alone is our judge and in Christ alone, we experience authentic, eternal LIBERTY.
Take the time to pray for America today. You may still have time to find a prayer gathering in your area, where you can gather with other believers to intercede for the nation. Click here to see what’s near you. If you prefer, there are many prayer calls you can participate in. You can find the official National Day of Prayer call-in information here.
Let’s make this year’s National Day of Prayer a defining moment in America. We are facing many national challenges, but we also have great prophetic promises from the Lord. We are a nation He loves. As we proclaim together He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords over this country, let us also ask Him to pour His love out on all flesh. Let’s ask Him to save the lost, heal the sick, and set every captive free. Let us exalt the Name of Jesus over this land, and proclaim that “Everyone who calls on the Name of the Lord shall be saved” (Acts 2:21; Romans 10:13).
“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound.” (Isaiah 61:1; ESV)
Pray with me:
Lord, we are humbled and blessed at the grace and love You have shown the United States of America. We know there has been much repentance for this nation. We have repented for abortion, for slavery, and for our actions with the First Nation’s people, breaking covenant with them time and again. There have been other national sins. But as we repent, the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin and unrighteousness. Forgive us and restore us completely to Your plan and purpose.
It is time for Your Church in America to arise. The Ekklesia here is going to be everything You said we would be. We will function in power, might, and glory as You fill us with Your love, great faith, and uncompromising boldness. Today, we honor our covenant with You. We embrace You, Lord. We will make You known in America – let the full manifestation of Your Kingdom be seen. We declare that this is a nation whose God is the Lord. We worship You over America.
And let the fullness of Christ and the Gospel of the Kingdom be spread to all nations by Your Ekklesia in America.
America is a nation whose God is the Lord. He gives us Love, Life, and Liberty!