Editors note: On Tuesday, January 23, Pastor Joe Wright of the Central Christian Church in Topeka, Kansas, opened the Kansas State Legislature with a simple prayer---a prayer that made the liberals roar. Point of View aired the story and publicized the prayer nationally on Friday, January 26. The response has been overwhelming. We asked Joe Wright to write his account of what happened.
On Monday evening, January 22, I received a phone call about 10 p.m. from Rep. Tony Powell in Topeka. He knew I was coming to the capital the next day to attend some anti-casino gambling meetings. He asked if I would have the morning prayer as the guest chaplain to open the State House session.
As I sat down late that evening to prepare the prayer for the next morning, I thought about what I needed to include.
That Sunday at church was "Repentance Sunday" and our whole service was centered around searching our hearts and examining our lives. Sitting in my office at home, I remembered that approximately a year ago I had seen a prayer written by a preacher friend, Bob Russell, in Louisville, Kentucky, called "A Prayer of Repentance." I located it and pulled excerpts to help me prepare what I would present the next morning.
Never in my wildest dreams did I expect what the response would be.
WHAT HAPPENED THAT MORNING
I arrived only minutes before I was introduced as the guest chaplain. I quickly stepped to the podium, bowed my head and prayed verbatim what I had written down in front of me. I made no other comments. Immediately following the "amen," I walked out of the room to attend my meeting. It was not until an hour later, when some of the congressmen who were interested in helping us fight the gambling issue joined us for lunch, that I first heard about the "firestorm" that broke out in the House after I left.
Evidently, three or four of the legislators came forward upon my exit and grabbed the mic and ranted and raved about how my prayer had offended them and some of their constituents. The rest is history!
Over 1,100 messages have come through our church switchboard from across the state and nation! Most of those calling are not members of our church, but rather people out at the grassroots who are almost unanimously thrilled to hear the report that the uncompromising truth of God was spoken clearly in our states political arena in Topeka. God has received magnificent glory these past few days. Praise His name!
But isnt it heartbreaking that we live in an age where what should normally and even essentially be expected from a preacher and every Christian, is so rare that it is applauded? Please think about that. Every one of us who have experienced Gods marvelous grace should always be ready and willing to stand up and speak boldly of him at every opportunity afforded us! Lets do it!
A Prayer for Repentance
Heavenly Father, we come before You today to ask Your forgiveness and seek Your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, "Woe to those who call evil good," but thats exactly what we have done.
We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and inverted our values.
We confess that we have ridiculed the absolute truth of Your Word and called it moral pluralism.
We have worshiped other gods and called it multiculturalism.
We have endorsed perversion and called it an alternative lifestyle.
We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.
We have neglected the needy and called it self-preservation.
We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.
We have killed our unborn and called it choice.
We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.
We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self-esteem.
We have abused power and called it political savvy.
We have coveted our neighbors possessions and called it ambition.
We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression.
We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.
Search us, O God, and know our hearts today. Try us and see if there be some wicked way in us. Cleanse us from every sin and set us free.
Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent here by the people of Kansas, and who have been ordained by You, to govern this great state. Grant them Your wisdom to rule and may their decisions direct us to the center of Your will. I ask it in the name of Your Son, the Living Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen
This article is adapted from The Freedom Club Report, a monthly newsletter published for supporters of Point of View Radio Talk Show.
Point of View Radio Talk Show uses the powerful tool of live, daily, national talk radio to defend a Biblical Christian worldview and to proclaim Christian solutions for the problems of America. Point of View---and its parent ministry, International Christian Media (ICM)---aims to restore the greatness of Christian thought and values to every area of American life using cutting-edge communication formats, including satellite talk radio, publications, audio tapes, and computer networking.
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