Psalm 35:1-2 “Plead my cause, O LORD, with them that strive with me: fight against them that fight against me. Take hold of shield and buckler, and stand up for mine help.”
As the First Continental Congress began its two-month meeting on September 5th, 1774, the members immediately recognized that they needed prayer to accomplish their important task. As the day opened on the morning of September 7th, Jacob Duché prayed the following:
“O Lord our Heavenly Father, high and mighty King of kings, and Lord of lords, who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers on earth and reignest with power supreme and uncontrolled over all the Kingdoms, Empires and Governments; look down in mercy, we beseech Thee, on these our American States, who have fled to Thee from the rod of the oppressor and thrown themselves on Thy gracious protection, desiring to be henceforth dependent only on Thee. To Thee have they appealed for the righteousness of their cause; to Thee do they now look up for that countenance and support, which Thou alone canst give. Take them, therefore, Heavenly Father, under Thy nurturing care; give them wisdom in Council and valor in the field; defeat the malicious designs of our cruel adversaries; convince them of the unrighteousness of their Cause and if they persist in their sanguinary purposes, of own unerring justice, sounding in their hearts, constrain them to drop the weapons of war from their unnerved hands in the day of battle!
Be Thou present, O God of wisdom, and direct the councils of this honorable assembly; enable them to settle things on the best and surest foundation. That the scene of blood may be speedily closed; that order, harmony and peace may be effectually restored, and truth and justice, religion and piety, prevail and flourish amongst the people. Preserve the health of their bodies and vigor of their minds; shower down on them and the millions they here represent, such temporal blessings as Thou seest expedient for them in this world and crown them with everlasting glory in the world to come. All this we ask in the name and through the merits of Jesus Christ, Thy Son and our Savior.”
The leaders of our first governing body humbly recognized the need for prayer as they went about their deliberations. They prayed for personal and national protection. They prayed for direction and wisdom. They prayed for their own physical and mental well-being. They prayed for their weighty responsibility representing millions of colonial citizens. They prayed to be dependent only on Him.
They recognized the need to pray for leadership … theirs. PLEASE PRAY FOR OUR NATION’S LEADERS TO GOVERN WITH GODLY DIRECTION AND WISDOM. Our leaders represent millions of citizens, and like our forefathers they need God to “direct the councils of [their] honorable assembly.” While they may not know it, they are wholly dependent on Him.