1 Kings 8:39-40 “Deal with each man according to all he does, since you know his heart (for you alone know the hearts of all men), so that they will fear you all the time they live in the land you gave our fathers.”
It takes courage to pray that God would deal with us according to our deeds and our hearts, because we all have a bent toward sin. However, here Solomon was praying under the anointing of the Holy Spirit, and this is a good prayer indeed. The reason to pray this way is given in the last part of the passage: so that people will fear God. The problem is, when we don’t recognize the consequences of our actions, we have little incentive to continue doing good stuff and stop doing bad stuff. We receive those consequences, but too often we don’t recognize the connection. Right now America is in the middle of receiving the consequences of rejecting God, but even Church leaders hesitate to say it, because it isn’t politically correct to do so. Not everyone affected by a natural disaster, for example, is in rebellion against God, but that doesn’t mean the disaster hasn’t come because of the actions of society as a whole. More than anything else right now, America is in need of a spirit of repentance. Only then will the healing and revival many long for be poured out on the nation.
Living in Japan as I do, things in America at once seem both clearer and more distant than they would if I were there. I am not to let that make me feel either that I am immune to the temptations that have snared so many, or that what is going on is unimportant to me. Japan is the nation of my birth and the majority of my life, but my roots are distinctly American, and America has enormous influence, both for good and for evil, in the whole world. I am to guard my own heart, and my consequent actions, and I am to pray faithfully for America. The presidential election this year is an enormously important turning point. If a man of genuine righteousness is elected, then there will be far more hope for the nation. If someone who ignores God is elected, then that will mean God’s judgment has come on the nation. I am to pray for God’s mercy, not just for Japan where I live and minister, but for America as well.
Father, thank You for this reminder. You give them to me pretty frequently! Help me be faithful in all that You have for me to do, in activities, in words, and especially in prayer. May I be Your agent for Your will to be done on every level, throughout the world, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!