Praying for the Nations: The One Nation Challenge
~~~ Please watch the corresponding teaching video at the end of this article. ~~~
I consider praying for the nations to be a very important aspect of the Christian life. To start with, it is vital that we realize that we as individuals, and corporately, have authority to pray for the nation we are from. God wants us to pray for our nation on a regular basis.
In 2012 I spent a month in Cambodia. As I traveled around the nation, the Lord gave me a prophetic word to deliver to the people of that nation. I gave it to the church there in Phnom Penh. I told them that it is time for the Cambodian people to pray for their own nation. I told them that the Lord is calling them to send messages to the four corners of the nation and tell the people it’s time to pray. God has given us authority to pray for the nation we’re from.
Prayer for America
In 2016 I was in Charlottesville Virginia. I was traveling through with family and our hotel was just a few blocks from the University of Virginia. I have an ongoing burden for university students and thought it would be a good idea to get up early and go pray on the campus. As I was praying, the Lord spoke to me to take out my phone and record a video asking people to pray for America and to pray for university students. (For video tap or click photo) Little did I know that just a few months later, near that very spot, there was a demonstration where someone drove a truck into a crowd of demonstrators. It’s amazing how God can send someone ahead of time to pray into a situation that is going to be important for our nation.
The One Nation Challenge
I would like to challenge you, along with praying for your nation, to adopt at least one other nation to pray for on a regular basis. Some may say, “Well isn’t there enough to pray for here? Why should I pray for another nation? Isn’t there so much need in my nation, my city, my neighborhood?” And of course, the answer is yes. We can easily get into what I call an “either/or” mindset. This has been an argument for many years on the rationale of sending people to the mission field. Isn’t the need great enough here? Why should we send someone? Often we approach kingdom ideas with an “either/or” attitude but, in this case, it is a “both/and” situation. Because there is so much to pray for in my own nation does not give me a pass on praying for other nations.
God wants us to have a missional mindset. Many would say, “How can I be involved in the nations when I am so committed to what God has been doing here in my own nation?“ However, I would like to say… You can go to the nations in prayer. You can be involved in what God is doing around the world by prayer.
Why should we Pray for other Nations?
Here are a few things to consider:
- It’s Biblical
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men. 1 Timothy 2:1
Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance, And the ends of the earth for Your possession. Psalm 2:8
Then He taught, saying to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations’? Mark 11:17
- The Facts Demonstrate the Need
There are 206 nations, each one needing prayer. In those 206 nations are 7 .5 billion people, each one needing prayer. That number may not mean that much to you until you realize that a billion is 1000 million’s. In perspective, America is only 1/24th the population of the planet. We have two nations that have over 1 billion each in their populations. The numbers are staggering. Jesus said the harvest is great. We need to pray that He sends laborers into the harvest
- The Harvest of Souls is always Preceded by Prayer
Here is what one of my heroes in prayer, Mike Bickle said:
“You can’t separate intercession from the harvest or the harvest from intercession. When we divorce intercession from the great harvest in any way, we tamper with the wisdom that resides in the core of the Godhead. When intercession goes flat, evangelism goes weak. There is meant to be one heart beat in the midst of one people all over the earth. Intercession… that’s Jesus’s way!”
Along with the harvest, there are so many things to be prayed into. From praying for the local church and its leaders, to asking God to intervene in human trafficking. The list is endless.
Some Practical Wisdom and Ideas
- Ask God for at least one nation and consider it to be YOUR ASSIGNMENT.
This assignment is not heavy or based on obligation. It’s an invitation to enter into the joy and the love He has for the nation you are praying for. Take your assignment seriously before the Lord, trusting that your prayers are making a difference.
- Gather information about your nation.
Interestingly enough, technology can be a big help for this. You can ask Siri or Google on your phone and it will give you instant answers about your nation.
Other tools like Wikipedia or Operation World are great to find out specifics about your nation. The Operation World book or website is good because it’ll give you specific prayer points that can be helpful.
Along with the information you gather, ask God to give you prophetic insight into the nation you’re praying for. Prophetic intel is a very powerful source for intercession.
- Specific things to pray over your nation.
Here our some specific ideas that I use when praying for a nation. You can use these or ask The Holy Spirit to give you specifics of your own to pray.
- Churches, ministries, pastors and leaders to be blessed and used mightily in the kingdom.
- Five- fold ministry to be blessed, activated and released
- Missionaries to be encouraged, blessed, strengthened and resourced.
- Preachers to be anointed, motivated by love.
- That God would intervene in human trafficking, prostitution, pornography and rape.
- Every president, prime minister, king, queen and tribal leader to have a heart to know Him and lead their nations into righteousness. (Proverbs 14:34)
- Every university campus to be a place of revival and for every university student to have a divine encounter; undeniable.
It’s also good to pray for specific churches, leaders, missionaries and situations you know about. The Lord spoke to me clearly one day that the prayer need for the nations is so great. He is calling everyone who will, not just intercessors, to pray.
God is so excited to partner with you as you co-labor with him in daily intercessory prayer. The Holy Spirit is ready to come alongside and enable you in this. It’s not to be a heavy burden or just one more thing to do.
Will you take up the challenge? God wants you to know that He loves to hear your prayers and He is more excited about you joining together with Him in this than you are.
Then… Who knows? Maybe someday you will be going to that nation to pray and minister there as well. With God all things are possible.
Bless you as you step into the adventure of prayer for the nations.