Every week, our pastor prays for the president and for other leaders, as well as for peace and a better world. But I honestly wonder what good it does. The world seems just as bad off as it ever was, and I'm not sure if it really makes any difference. Why bother? — J.Z.
On this National Day of Prayer especially, we should remember that God calls us to pray "for everyone—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness" (1 Timothy 2:1-2). I'm glad your pastor prays for our leaders, because they need it.
Does it make any difference? Let me answer that by asking you another question: Have you ever asked yourself how much worse off the world would be if we didn't pray? God answers prayer, and even when we can't see it, He still is at work. Yes, we live in a world that is filled with danger and evil—but if God's people neglected to pray, our world would be a much worse place.
Evil is real—and evil is real because Satan is real. But God is also real, and by His Spirit He restrains Satan from doing even more evil. The Bible says that "the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way" (2 Thessalonians 2:7).
Pray for our leaders, as well as the leaders of other nations. Pray that God will give them wisdom and will even overrule them when they go astray. Most of all, pray that God will help you and your family to be faithful in living for Christ and praying for our world.