Give Me That Mountain!
Praying for the Nations
By Vanya Trifonova
Christians are called to pray for the country we call home. Pray in our quiet times. Pray in our church services. Pray in our storms and trials. Pray in times of war and times of peace.
Esther prayed and fasted before entering the king’s chambers, so her people would be saved. Moses prayed for his people during the exodus from Egypt. Nehemiah asked God to forgive the iniquities of his people and help him restore the walls of Jerusalem.
Do we pray like that? Do we seek God’s glory and the good of the people around us? Can we pray as Abraham and trust God until we hear His answer, His answer for His people, not just for us?
Will we pray as Nathan and speak about spiritual matters to the leaders of our nation?
Are we ready to lift up the people of our country and wage war by praying for them? To ask for their salvation and pray for specific needs? Do we do that? Do we make this kind of prayer a priority?
Bulgarian Christians have an interdenominational prayer movement called “Brotherly Love.” Annually, people gather to worship God and intercede for our people and society. Pastors lead congregations to pray for the youth, the rulers, current political problems, against corruption, for the judicial system, the health system, and much more. The meetings are livestreamed, so every Christian can join in prayer.
One pastor told me, “The hardest thing is to get people to pray.” Why is this so? Does it have to be the hardest thing for Christians? Paul prayed and encouraged others even while in chains and enduring hardship. The widow knocked on the judge’s door until he saw she would get justice. We should follow their examples.
During the months since the war in Ukraine started, we have taken part in prayer gatherings to ask God’s protection for the people of Ukraine and for peace. In Ukraine and Poland, people went out into the squares, kneeling and praying for peace and for the salvation of Ukraine. We have not done that. In Ukraine, billboards display prayers from the Bible. Bulgaria does not have those.
Should we revive our prayer lives only during times of trials and death? As Christians, we pray for the church to be salt and light. We pray God would transform us so we can transform the world around us.
Maybe we hear these things and are challenged or convicted, but how can we practice them?
Start with ourselves. Commit a portion of your daily quiet time to earnestly pray for your nation and rulers. Join prayer groups and diligently lift up prayer requests. Organize prayer gatherings for the churches in your city, town, or community and pray together for specific needs.
Pray for our people. Let us remind ourselves the place God called us to live and serve Him is also the place we are called to pray. Ask for blessings for our nation, cry for the salvation of the souls of our neighbors, and witness for the faith, so we might see fruit from our prayers for our people.
God lifts up and pulls down nations. He reigns over history. He is the Almighty. And He answers prayer!
About the Author: Vanya Trifonova and her Husband Trif have served as church planters with IM, inc. since 2013 in Varna, Bulgaria, planting New Life Church. Former atheists, the couple came to the faith after democratic changes in the country in 1989. Learn more about IM’s work in Bulgaria: iminc.org/our-impact