|Those Nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord!|
|Today is the 2011 National Day of Prayer.
History of the National Day of Prayer
Prior to the founding of our nation, the Continental Congress issued a proclamation recommending a "day of publick [sic] humiliation, fasting, and prayer" be observed on July 20, 1775.
During the Quasi-War with France, President John Adams declared May 9, 1798, a "day of solemn humility, fasting and prayer."
On March 30, 1863, Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation expressing the idea "that the awful calamity of civil war [sic] which now desolates the land, may be but a punishment inflicted upon us, for our presumptuous sins" and designated April 30, 1863 as a day of "national humiliation, fasting and prayer" in hopes that God would respond by restoring our "now divided and suffering country to its former happy condition of unity and peace. It is the duty of nations, as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions, in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all of history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord."
More recently, Billy Graham is attributed with the introduction of a national day of prayer, suggesting it in a multi-week crusade at the nation’s capitol. Members of the House and Senate introduced a joint resolution for an annual National Day of Prayer "on which the people of the United States may turn to God in prayer and meditation at church, in groups and as individuals." On April 17, 1952, President Harry S. Truman signed the bill.
In his 1983 declaration, President Ronald Reagan said, "From General Washington’s struggle at Valley Forge to the present, this Nation fervently sought and received divine guidance as it pursued the course of history. This occasion provides our Nation an opportunity to further recognize the source of our blessings, and to seek His help for the challenges we face today and in the future."
A great source of inspiration for any student of history, you will be uplifted and challenged by reading Prayers and Presidents: Inspiring Faith from Leaders of the Past.
In this book, you will find a chapter on every president, from George Washington to George W. Bush, with excerpts from Proclamations, Addresses to Congress, Executive Orders and Personal Correspondence and Memoirs.