Today, Donald J. Trump will place his hand on the Lincoln Bible and take the oath of office to serve the American people as our 45th President. I cannot remember a time in my life when a President has been the target of so many arrows even prior to taking office. I believe it’s important that Christians pray for him, just as we do for all of our leaders. It’s time for Christians to put aside party politics and be Christian as their first priority. President Trump deserves our prayers as encouragement to walk a path God puts before him and to do it with the strength of Christ, perseverance, and grace knowing that the path is one God chose and President Trump is simply one leader—a legitimate leader—because God put him there.
Way too many Christians don’t want to believe Romans 13:1-10 except when it applies the person they voted for. But that’s not how the Bible works, and it’s not what God says. Real Christians read Romans 13:1-10 and know it means everyone submits and all authorities are established by God.
To all those government officials staying home from the Inauguration, I would recommend reading Romans 13:1-10 until it sinks in that what they’ve chosen to do is to dishonor God. To rebel against God. And just as God put President Obama in place for eight years to bring America to its current place, God has put President Trump in office to continue God’s work in America.
Make no mistake, we are not God’s chosen people. America is not God’s Promised Land. But rather, all nations are as a drop in the bucket (Isaiah 40:13-31) and God uses our elected leaders to remind us that we cannot look to them. We must look to God for He is God alone.
Truthfully, I look upon President Trump with a great deal of sympathy. He’s a sinner just like me. He has stepped forward at a time in our nation to put his prior skills in business to use in order to help this country. But instead of cheering on the work that benefits us all, far too many of us have chosen to sharpen and gnash our razor teeth on anything resembling red meat thrown in our direction by political irreligious people and media types who want nothing but to tear him down. That behavior is ungodly and pathetic.
I have taken a few arrows in my time, but nothing like what President Trump has been experiencing. My heart is sympathetic toward him and my commitment in 2017 has been to pray for him every day without fail. To pray for his family—his wife Melania, his son Barron, and his adult children and their families. To pray for his cabinet, some of the best and brightest our country has to offer. And in so many cases, their lives would be easier if they were simply to sit on the sidelines and do nothing like the rest of us. Instead they’re sacrificing a lot to serve us and getting treated viciously in the process.
President Theodore Roosevelt in a speech called The Man in the Arena, spoke some very profound words about such heroes.
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
I have that quote on the bulletin board in my study to remind me of the value of my many failures and how critics will always criticize. Christian and critic only have a few letters in common and that’s about all.
Instead of choosing to do the devil’s work of stealing, killing, destroying…and rebelling against God by those very actions, Christians need to be Christians first and so I invite you to join me in praying for President Trump.
Father God, You alone are God. We praise You for the peaceful transition of power in the United States and for Your hand of grace upon this nation. We thank You for giving us a new beginning with a new administration and for the work we know You are faithfully doing in this country. We thank You for President Trump whom You have established because Your Word says You have. We ask that he will glorify You by being President of all the people in this country and that he will seek Your face and lead with Your wisdom. We ask for Your protection over him, that Your holy angels will establish a guard around him as he does the work You have prepared in advance for him to do. By Your grace, may they shield his family and preserve them from the legion of evil arrayed against them. We thank You for the preparation You have given to him in the business world and in communications so that he might lead with wisdom and love. We ask for Your favor and restoration when he fails and to restore his confidence in times he stumbles. We pray for Your strength when times get difficult, Your clarity when things seem unclear, for Your will to be done with energy and zeal, and that Your miracles would unfold, revealing Your goodness and love as answers to prayer by the many people who prayed Your will be done in the election. May the Gospel go forth into the nations as we take our light to the world. May we be known as a Christian nation, a people who look to You. Be with America, LORD. Be with Your people in the US and around the world. Be with President Trump and guide him for our good and Your glory. Be glorified in us and our actions, LORD. In Jesus’ mighty Name, Amen.