Our Bible study group is presently studying Daniel. This week we started with Daniel 9 which is one of my favorite passages. I think this prayer is a marvelous model when praying for revival. Just replace Israel and Jerusalem with your home country or place of ministry.
4 “O Lord, you are a great and awesome God! You always fulfill your promises of unfailing love to those who love you and keep your commands. 5 But we have sinned and done wrong. We have rebelled against you and scorned your commands and regulations. 6 We have refused to listen to your servants the prophets, who spoke your messages to our kings and princes and ancestors and to all the people of the land.
7 “Lord, you are in the right; but our faces are covered with shame, just as you see us now. This is true of us all, including the people of Judah and Jerusalem and all Israel, scattered near and far, wherever you have driven us because of our disloyalty to you. 8 O LORD, we and our kings, princes, and ancestors are covered with shame because we have sinned against you. 9 But the Lord our God is merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against him. 10 We have not obeyed the LORD our God, for we have not followed the laws he gave us through his servants the prophets. 11 All Israel has disobeyed your law and turned away, refusing to listen to your voice.
“So now the solemn curses and judgments written in the law of Moses, the servant of God, have been poured out against us because of our sin. 12 You have done exactly what you warned you would do against us and our rulers. Never in all history has there been a disaster like the one that happened in Jerusalem. 13 Every curse written against us in the law of Moses has come true. All the troubles he predicted have taken place. But we have refused to seek mercy from the LORD our God by turning from our sins and recognizing his truth. 14 The LORD has brought against us the disaster he prepared, for we did not obey him, and the LORD our God is just in everything he does.
15 “O Lord our God, you brought lasting honor to your name by rescuing your people from Egypt in a great display of power. But we have sinned and are full of wickedness. 16 In view of all your faithful mercies, Lord, please turn your furious anger away from your city of Jerusalem, your holy mountain. All the neighboring nations mock Jerusalem and your people because of our sins and the sins of our ancestors.
17 “O our God, hear your servant’s prayer! Listen as I plead. For your own sake, Lord, smile again on your desolate sanctuary.
18 “O my God, listen to me and hear my request. Open your eyes and see our wretchedness. See how your city lies in ruins—for everyone knows that it is yours. We do not ask because we deserve help, but because you are so merciful.
19 “O Lord, hear. O Lord, forgive. O Lord, listen and act! For your own sake, O my God, do not delay, for your people and your city bear your name.”
I have prayed with Daniel’s words many times where I have worked before. I have to admit that I have not used it for the country where I live now. Somehow, it seems to be more fitting for a Christian (or Jewish) context than in a non-Christian context, in my view, as it presupposes an existing relationship and covenant with the Lord.
Which passages in Scripture do you use to pray for your ministry context?