I don’t know about you and your family, but our family has been getting into the World Cup soccer. I’m pretty sure that each game has been on at least one laptop in our house for the entire competition thus far! Sometimes it is fun to listen to the game by announcers from other countries – they give a different perspective, can be insightful, and their enthusiasm can be entertaining!
Anyway, throughout these past weeks, the chant of “I believe that we can win! I believe that we can win!” has taken off across this nation. The USA men’s team was not expected to do so well but they made it out of pool play to the Round of 16. In their loss to Belgium in the Round of 16, the USA defense did not play so well, but the goalie “stood on his head” and made a record number of saves. The USA men’s team garnered the respect of other nations because of their tenacity and never-give-up attitude. Because they are representing the United States nation, those qualities have been transferred to us as a nation – some welcomed positive attributes.
However, I am not only citizen of the United States, I am also a citizen of heaven – and I am on Team Jesus. And Team Jesus is definitely a team – a body – with many players with different strengths and different roles. We have our own “Lionel Messi”s and “Christiano Ronaldo”s, and we also have our little known players of “DeAndrea Yedlin”s and “Julian Green”s. But regardless, it takes a whole team to win a game. And in our case, our chant has and always will be “I believe that we HAVE won! I believe that we HAVE won!” because the outcome has already been determined by Jesus’ death and resurrection. What an awesome team to be on!! When challenges come my way, I can remember the chant and “play” with confidence – the victory is ours!!
With the July 4th weekend still in my mind, I am asking us all to pray for our country this week – perhaps taking one weekday to pray for a specific area:
Today, we can pray for our president, governors, and mayors – pray that the hearts of our leaders put God on the thrones of their hearts.
Tomorrow, we can pray for our legislatures – from federal and state congressmen and women to our local councilmen. Pray that they will make laws that are in keeping with God’s laws.
Wednesday, we can pray for all our judges – from the Supreme Court to our local magistrates. Pray that they will seek God before any decision they will make.
Thursday, we can lift up all those who enforce the laws in our nation – from the federal to state to local men and women who make sure we obey the laws and who protect us from those who don’t. Pray for their protection and that they they seek God’s wisdom in carrying out their work.
On Friday, we can pray for all citizens of this great nation. Pray that we seek God in our lives. Pray that we are informed citizens who wisely use our great privilege to vote.
Each day, we can pray that our leaders, legislatures, judges, enforcers, and citizens will be guided by what is right and not necessarily what is popular. Pray for a desire to follow God’s will – a strength to stand against the temptation of power and popularity – a desire to serve God. For those who do not know God, we can pray that the Spirit work on their hearts to produce the miracle of faith.
Recently, there was an elite track event in Paris, France. A well-known 800m Frenchman decided to run his race before the home crowd in an outfit that mimicked the World Cup team from France – complete with similar shorts and jersey with his name across the back, long socks, but with black spikes instead of soccer cleats. He looked like a French World Cup player – He was proud of his country and his country’s soccer team! What a delight! In the same way, I pray that we Christians are proud of our heavenly citizenship and our place on Team Jesus – that we stand out and express our joy in being who we are in Christ!
Philippians 3:20 But we are citizens of heaven.
John 16:33 I [Jesus] have won the battle over the world.
“Dear Jesus, I am so glad You have placed me on Your team!! Help me stand out as Your team member – I want others to see Your attributes through me. I don’t want to blend in with the crowd or be mistaken for belonging to another team – I want to be salt and light for You – to be recognizable as one who belongs on Your team. Fill me with Your Spirit. And LORD, I want to pray for this great nation You have placed me in. You have so very much blessed this nation! I pray for our leaders from top to bottom – may they seek Your righteousness and put You on the throne of their hearts. Only then will we be a nation who will continue to receive Your blessing and approval. But LORD, I know that change can only occur from changed hearts – not from changed laws. LORD, I pray for Christian citizens who care about the hearts of others – who are bold, exercise their faith, and share You with those You have put in our lives. Make us a nation who can truly chant, “I believe that we HAVE won!” Thank You, Jesus!”
Truth in Love Ministry
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