I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:1-4)
We live in an age of disruption. Not much seems to be peaceful or quiet these days. Even less, we do not see much godliness and holiness around us. Disruption is now a feature in the business world as economic models of the past are challenged. Politically, it has been a long time since we have seen such polarization and division among people and politicians. Even in the Christian world, there are new schisms emerging as theological, moral, and ethical values are challenged.
Perhaps this is just the way the world is. History shows us that almost every generation has these challenges. Paul’s wisdom and advice to Timothy still hold. As followers of Jesus, seeking a world of peace, we should be praying regularly for all people. This includes our rulers and those in positions of authority. It is easy in the current context to mock, ridicule and be dismissive of leaders. The Christian call is a counter-cultural one. Paul isn’t saying we have to like those in authority, only that we should be praying for them so that all of us might be able to live quiet lives with holiness. I wonder if we are seeing such upheaval because God’s people have stopped praying in this way. What happens when we make this part of our daily prayers? Perhaps it is time to try. Nothing else seems to be working.