Analysis: EMELDA MUSONDA
TODAY, October 18, Zambians from all walks of life gather at various venues to pray for God’s intervention in the affairs of the country as they observe the National Day of Prayer as declared by President Edgar Lungu in 2015.
This is in line with the declaration of Zambia as a Christian nation as enshrined in the constitution.
For the fourth year in a role, the National Day of Prayer presents an opportunity for Zambians to put their political, ethnic, and religious differences aside to approach the throne of God in unison.
This year the day is being observed under the theme, “facing the future as a reconciled, united and prosperous nation under God’s guidance” anchored on 2 Corinthians 5:19-21, 3 John 2.
President Lungu will grace the national event in Kabwe at Railways Stadium, while the Vice-President Inonge Wina will officiate at the Lusaka event to be held at the National House of Prayer site.
Given the social, economic and political challenges the country is grappling with, it is reason enough for every patriotic Zambian to turn up and unite in prayer today.
It is a bare fact that whatever challenges the country is faced with affect all its citizens and residents.
For instance, whether one is a clergy, politician or ordinary citizen, all are affected by the recent weakening of the Kwacha against other major convertible currencies. This is partly the reason why we are paying more for fuel as well as other goods and services.
There has been an upswing of moral decay and deviance among youths. This year, like never before, we saw an unprecedented emergence of youth gangs causing havoc to society. Many young people are wasting their lives through casual sex and drug and alcohol abuse.
Poverty and unemployment levels leave much to be desired. Corruption is becoming a way of life among many Zambians at different levels of the societal strata. This has potential to collapse the country’s service delivery and consequently stifle development.
Meteorological experts have also projected an El Nino which is likely to affect the rainy season.
These are just but a few of the many reasons why every Zambian Christian should be compelled to “die a little” for mother Zambia by denying their bodies food for just 12 hours. It is for a noble cause.
The Bible in 2 Chronicles 7:14-18 says, “ If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.’’
This scripture is an assurance that if Zambians humble themselves and in sincerity pray and seek God’s face, He will surely answer them.
However as politicians, church leaders, civil society and ordinary citizens gather today in various venues to petition God, let them adhere to what the Bible says in Mathew 5:23.
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you; leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.’’
This is a very important condition God has put to answering prayer. God cannot be corrupted or talked out of this condition.
Zambians must know that God attaches great importance to human relations. This is why the second greatest commandment He gave to man is to love his neighbour as much as he loves himself.
Before stepping out to go to the arena of prayer, let each and every individual regardless of status search their hearts for grudges or any strained relations with potential to hinder God’s intervention.
Those who have offended others should be bold enough to ask for forgiveness while those offended should be gracious enough to accept the apologies without conditions.
It may not require face-to-face interaction, just a phone call and text message may be what is required to break that wall that hindered some people from meeting eye to eye.
To our politicians, let them lead by example by demonstrating that they have the national interest at heart.
Politicians should desist from politicising this day, by coming together as one to seek God’s intervention.
But before that they need to genuinely reconcile one with another.
The call to reconcile also extends to church leaders and ordinary citizens to ensure they present themselves before the throne of God with pure hearts and in one accord.
It is sad that just like politicians, there is also infighting among the clergy.
Church leaders, by virtue of their calling, are supposed be exemplary.
Actually church leaders have a great role to play to reconcile politicians and ordinary citizens.
Finally Psalms 133:1-3 says, “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down on the collar of his robe. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.
Different schools of thought have also attested to the power that lies in unity.
I therefore beseech all Zambians to turn out in numbers and unite in calling on the name of the Lord for His divine intervention in the many challenges the country is faced with.
The author is Zambia Daily Mail editorials editor.
Analysis: EMELDA MUSONDA