What is a National Day of Prayer

A National Day of Prayer is a day of religious observance in which people are called upon to pray for their country.

When is the National Day of Prayer

The president of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, has called for a National Day of Prayer. “I, therefore, urge all South Africans to heed the call of the leaders of our various faith communities for a national day of prayer on Sunday, the 31st of May. We will once again come together to pray for the healing of our land and the protection of our people. On this day, wherever we may be, I call upon you to turn your thoughts to all who have been affected by this pandemic.”

How we will mark the National Day of Prayer

  1. In our live Sunday service (find out how to participate or watch here: http://www.crystalparkbaptistchurch.co.za/ or contact the church office for details: office@crystalparkbaptistchurch.co.za or +27 87 700 5319) rather than preach the next text in Ecclesiastes we will mark the day by preaching a standalone sermon from 1 Timothy 2:1-7 entitled An Urgent Call to Pray for a Nation Rejected by God.
  2. Following the preaching of God’s Word we will have a time of Corporate Prayer lead by Chris, Craig, Richard and Tshepo. They will concentrate their prayers on the South African economy, frontline medical staff, local churches in Benoni and families in our church and across the nation of South Africa under lockdown.
  3. At the bottom of this blog post is a prayer guide so that heads of households can lead their families in prayers after lunch.
  4. From 7:00-7:30pm there will be an opportunity to come together on a Zoom call and break up into smaller groups to pray together (contact the church office for details: office@crystalparkbaptistchurch.co.za or +27 87 700 5319).

Why we will mark the National Day of Prayer

A National Day of Prayer is a day of religious observance in which people are called upon to pray for their country. Presidents periodically call the nation to pray during times of war or other hardships.

It is biblical for Christians to gather to pray for the wisdom, safety, and guidance of our leaders; to offer thanksgiving for our national blessings. While we must acknowledge that the call is to people of all faiths to pray, our prayers at Crystal Park Baptist Church Benoni are not in solidarity with other religions or ecumenical in nature. Our prayers as a local church are made to God the Father, through Jesus Christ His Son and in the power of the Holy Spirit, as an act of worship before the Him. We will publicly pray for healing, repentance and guidance for our nation and its leaders.

Prayer Guide

PRAISE ITEMS: (1 Chronicles 16:29)

  • A Renewed Focus on God and His Word; the Sovereignty of God; the Mission of the Church; the value of corporate worship; the church as the gathered community and the importance of family.
  • Praise God for the leadership provided by our State President, Cabinet, and the National COVID-19 Command Council.
  • Praise God for organizations and churches providing relief by way of finance, food vouchers/parcels.
  • Praise God for the many people being reached with the Gospel message through modern-day technology and for those who received Christ as Saviour.

COVID-19 and Government: (1 Timothy 2:1-3)

  • Pray for national, provincial, and local government authorities as they respond to COVID-19.
  • Pray for God’s wisdom with regard to the phasing out of the National Lockdown.

COVID-19 and the Frontline Medical Staff/Personnel: (Psalm 46)

  • Pray for the families and loved ones of the deceased medical staff and victims. Pray for pastors and God’s church as they minister to such bereaved families.
  • Pray for God’s protection over the medical faculty, staff, and all involved in healthcare.
  • Pray for the World Health Organization (W.H.O.), Red Cross, and similar organizations.
  • Pray urgently for God’s wisdom for those trying to find a vaccine for the virus.

National Lockdown and Families: (Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Ephesians 5:21-6:4)

  • Pray for parents, guardians and grandparents as they seek to cope with the Lockdown challenges.
  • Pray for the effect of the Lockdown on tertiary education and children’s schooling in general.
  • Pray for those who are battling with the virus and their families.
  • Pray for the effect of the Lockdown upon theological students/lecturers/staff and their families.
  • Pray for family members who are serving as frontline workers in “essential services”.
  • Pray for pastors, missionaries and leaders ministering in different parts of the world and their families. Pray for those who have family members overseas.
  • Pray for families encountering domestic violence and abuse as a result of the Lockdown.

National Lockdown and the SA Economy: (Ecclesiastes 3:9-14)

  • Pray for the economic crisis being faced by the country.
  • Pray for the poverty and inequality in South Africa revealed as a result of the Lockdown.
  • Pray for those unemployed and retrenched as a result of the Lockdown.
  • Pray for our Gov. departments, all organizations and congregations that are assisting with food supplies.

National Lockdown and Local Churches: (Acts 2:42-47)

  • Pray for all our local churches that have been financially affected by the Lockdown.
  • Pray for the pastoral families of all our churches, especially those infected with the virus.
  • Pray for our pastors and church leaders as they seek to provide counsel during the Lockdown.
  • Pray that financially strong churches will assist weaker struggling churches.
  • Pray for the churches who do not have the facilities to go online and make contact with their members.

The guide has been adapted from NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER – 31st May 2020 PRAYER GUIDELINES – COVID 19 distributed by the Baptist Union of Southern Africa.

Parts of the article have been adapted from What is the National Day of Prayer published by GotQuestions.org