The History Of National Day Of Prayer
Because of the faith of many of our founding fathers, public prayer and national days of prayer have a long-standing and significant history in American tradition. The Supreme Court affirmed the right of state legislatures to open their sessions with prayer in Marsh vs. Chambers (1983).
The National Day of Prayer is a vital part of our heritage. Since the first call to prayer in 1775, when the Continental Congress asked the colonies to pray for wisdom in forming a nation, the call to prayer has continued through our history, including President Lincoln's proclamation of a day of "humiliation, fasting, and prayer" in 1863. In 1952, a joint resolution by Congress, signed by President Truman, declared an annual, national day of prayer. In 1988, the law was amended and signed by President Reagan, permanently setting the day as the first Thursday of every May. Each year, the president signs a proclamation, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day. Last year, all 50 state governors plus the governors of several U.S. territories signed similar proclamations.
The National Day of Prayer has great significance for us as a nation. It enables us to recall and to teach the way in which our founding fathers sought the wisdom of God when faced with critical decisions. It stands as a call to us to humbly come before God, seeking His guidance for our leaders and His grace upon us as a people. The unanimous passage of the bill establishing the National Day of Prayer as an annual event, signifies that prayer is as important to our nation today as it was in the beginning.
There are many ways you can involve yourself in the NDP. You can learn more about those opportunities by visiting the National Day of Prayer's Official Website. Let me encourage you to make it a point to check out the 7x7 Prayers.
Friends, our nation needs prayer like never before. Our government leaders need us to pray for them. Those fighting for our freedom all over the world need our prayers. The media, our economy, and those who are making decisions about our children's education need our prayers. The pastor's of our churches and their families need our prayers. Our families and friends need our prayers. Satan, I believe, is on the prowl in our day and age like he has never been before. He is out to destroy the body of Christ and we as members of that body must fall on our faces before the Lord and fight for what belongs to us.
"Prayer is the fuel that energizes the power of God."Dr. J.W. Lee, Old Testament Professor
Information on the history of the NDP was obtained from the NDP official website.