We are living in unusual times right now. COVID-19 is running rampant around the world, people have lost jobs, finances are uncertain, we are all wearing face masks in 104 degree weather, churches haven’t met in person in months, schools are trying to decide if they will open or wait, sports teams are trying to decide if they will play or not, finding certain items in the grocery store is a full time search, and we have an important election this year.
I’ve heard people, more than once, say, “Oh, we don’t listen to the news anymore, it’s too depressing.” I would like to encourage you to start listening to (or reading) the news each day for several reasons:
- As Christians, we need to be aware of what is going on in the world.
- Informed Christians engage in informed praying.
- Life or death information could be announced, and we need to know that for sure.
- By listening to the news, we can know how to pray more specifically. Specific prayers have a better chance of being answered specifically.
- It keeps you in touch with the world and prevents naivete.
- Uninformed Christians tend to be gullible.
- As we hear things in the news, let's remember that they are talking about real people and real-life situations.
With the reasons above in mind, let us use the news stories we hear as prayer prompts to pray through the news.
Here are a few thoughts on how you might 'pray the news':
- Pray as you listen to the news, asking the Lord to help you discern the truth that is being said.
- Watch the news from reputable sources and try to understand all sides of the situation.
- Pray for wisdom and direction for what you can do to help the situation.
- Thank the Lord for the doctors and nurses who serve around the world taking care of all the sick. Pray for their protection from the virus.
- Pray for the cities being destroyed by the rioting.
- Pray for the businesses that have been damaged or totally lost.
- Praying the news right then prevents “prayer procrastination” and forgetfulness!
- Pray for our churches and missionaries serving in the areas mentioned in the news.
- Pray for the families of those you hear mentioned in the news. Put yourself in their shoes.
Decades ago, someone said, “To be an informed praying Christian you must have a Bible in one hand and a newspaper in the other.” Let’s work on being informed prayers. Our world needs it now more than ever!
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6
Written by Earl Ann Bumpus, WMU of Texas President