A Prayer for the Church #TraditionallySouthside

My prayer for the Church on our Myers-Mallory State Board of Missions Day of Prayer:

Father, we come to You today as our Promise-Keeping God because we have seen in Your word that You are Faithful and True and we have experienced in our lives that this is factual. You have said that You would never leave us nor forsake us, and You never have. You have said that You would always be with us, and You are. You have said that You will hear us when we pray, and You do. So Father, today, we call out to You and once again ask and believe that You will keep Your promise and that You will hear our prayer. But this is not the promise that I am asking You to keep. In Matthew 16, Jesus, Your Son and our Savior, the Word that became flesh and dwelt among us, the Incarnate Lord, made a promise to us, Your children. He said, “Upon this Rock I will build my Church.” That is the Promise that I am asking You to keep today.

Father, I am coming to You in prayer for the Church universal and for our church, Southside Baptist. And Father, I am so grateful to You that You have truly built Your church. In 2000 years, we have seen the church grow from a few hundred followers to a billion people who claim the name of Christ. And Father, while we know that many of these are Christian in name only, that leaves hundreds of millions who have committed their lives to You. But Father, in recent decades, we have found ourselves struggling. In many parts of the world, Your Church is thriving, but it is in those parts of the world where Your children are being persecuted for their faith. In those parts of the world where we have freedom to worship and to share our faith, we find an epidemic of apathy. We see in the church in our country a laziness that has cost us dearly, and the result is a nation plagued by abortion, murder, racial division, and political turmoil. So Father, first, would You forgive us for our sin of apathy? Would You forgive us for our sin of laziness? Would You remind Your people through the convicting power of the Holy Spirit that You have called us to be true disciples, and the only way that we can be true disciples is if we are making true disciples? Would You remind us that You have chosen to build Your church through the testimony of Your children concerning the love and grace You have poured out on us? Would You remind us that every one of us has been called as witnesses of what Jesus did on the cross of Calvary, and it is upon that Rock, upon the Rock of Jesus Christ, upon His death and resurrection that You will build Your Church?

Father, my prayer for the Church today is that You would remind us that You are a Promise-Keeping God – that You have promised to build Your Church – that You have promised to draw all men unto Yourself but only as we lift up Your Son and our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ. So place within us a passion to do just that. But also, Father, remind us of the Promise You made to Your people long ago. The promise that You would heal us and forgive us. This is the Promise I am asking remembrance of for my church, Your church, our church, Southside Baptist Church. Would You remind us of the words You spoke to King Solomon all those years ago when You told him that if Your people, called by Your name, would humble themselves and pray and seek Your face and turn from their wicked ways, how You would hear their cries and forgive their sins and heal their land? Father, that is what we need. As a local church. As a nation. As a church universal. As a world. We, Your people, not the lost of this world, must first humble ourselves. We must remove the garments of our pride and the remnants of our arrogance. We must rend our hearts and plow their fallow grounds. Father, we must allow Your Holy Spirit to illuminate our sin and at once, recognize our unworthiness, confess our sinfulness, and repent of our unholiness. Father, we so often stand arrogantly refusing to acknowledge how wicked we are, and until we are willing to deal with even that which we consider to be the smallest sins we will never meet Your requirements for healing. Father, we must stop trying to deceive ourselves and others about how good we are. We must stop pretending and playing games with You. We must replace hatred with love. We must stop allowing the seeds of bitterness to take root and grow into mighty trees that destroy the fellowship, the family, that You have called us to be. Father, remind us today. Call us to repentance today. Send us revival today. This is my prayer for Your church today. In Jesus’ name.

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