As I participated in the National Prayer Breakfast again this year, I rejoice that I am part of an international family of friends who are using their time and influence to help the poor and share the person of Jesus. I am fully convinced that partnerships and friendships between political, faith and business leaders are making, and will continue to make, an incredible difference. Here’s a little sampling of encouragements.
1. People gathered from 140 nations including our President, Vice-President, Speaker of the House, many Senators and Representatives, several Heads of State and many others united to find out how Jesus might make a difference in our world.
2. Gary Haugen, Founder and President of International Justice Mission was the keynote speaker at the National Prayer Breakfast this year. Gary told us that there are 40 million slaves in the world today, yet we could be the generation that ends slavery through people and ministries that fight violence, injustice and slavery. He called us to not give up in doing good for in due time we will reap if we faint not. He reminded us that sooner or later the King calls from His throne for an account to be given for injustice. Gary’s first encounter with the National Prayer Breakfast was as a 19-year-old, and it inspired him to his life calling.
3. A friend named Rick decided to ask if the 100 White House Fellows would be interested in attending the Breakfast. One hundred Fellows said “YES.” Someone from the White House called and asked if this could be built into their program every year. Many of these one-hundred will be future Governors, Cabinet members and key leaders.
4. Christine, a woman who was in my small group, is using her years of experience at CNN to now lead a team that is taking on and exposing the systemic sexual abuse practices and systemic cover-ups in religious organizations. She came to faith through a Prayer Breakfast leader.
5. Tony Hall, former Democratic Congressman from Ohio and U.S. Ambassador for World Hunger shared about his 30-year weekly friendship and prayer commitment with Republican Congressman Frank Wolf and the incredible national and global accomplishments that have sprung out of their weekly prayer together. Tony met Jesus through the ministry of the Prayer Breakfast leaders. Many Democrats and Republicans meet weekly for prayer together.
6. Many, many people prayed for Pastor Andrew Brunson who was imprisoned in Turkey for two years. He was freed in October. I got to meet him at the National Prayer Breakfast. He is home!!!!!!
7. Chris Tomlin lead us in worship. Twenty years ago, he was a country boy who only knew three songs. A young man named James told him he wasn’t very good, but that one day he would become the world’s songwriter. That man, James, went on to become the U.S. Senator from Oklahoma and lead the Breakfast this year, and Chris Tomlin became well … Chris Tomlin!
8. It was a joy to meet one-on-one with many of our Louisiana Senators and Representatives and pray with them in their offices.
9. Finally, I am amazed at the power of God to reach into the lives of people from around the globe. Often, we get tricked to give our lives to a religion rather than a person … Jesus. He alone is mighty to save. The stories heard at this year’s Prayer Breakfast are too numerous to share. We are told in John 5:17 that the Father is always working … whether we see it or not. This is true both in government and in your life and mine.
- Donna and I are leading a group of 55 to the Holy Land, March 1-10.
- Our Louisiana Legislative Session gears up when we get back and I will spend a lot of time caring for leaders at the Capitol. We are committed to helping leaders take next steps in their faith and callings.
Helping Louisiana’s Leaders,