Thursday, May 4, 2017

America's National Day of Prayer // History

For the last two years, I've done a post on the National Day of Prayer on the first Thursday of May. This year, I'm going to change it up a bit and give you the history behind this day that is dedicated to praying for America. (As a side note, today also happens to be National Star Wars Day, which is always May 4th. "May the Fourth Be With You!")

Here is the link to 2015's post on the National Day of Prayer.
Click here to read 2016's post.

Over the history of America, there have been many times that our nation had held days for prayer. Oftentimes, it is Congress or the president who has called for these days.
  • For instance, Boston had a day of fasting and prayer in 1768.
  • Virginia's House of Burgesses declared a day of prayer and fasting on June 1, 1774 in protest of the Boston Port Act.
  • During 1774-1775 Georgia, Maryland, and South Carolina all observed prayer days.
  • In the very formation of this country in 1775, the Continental Congress set aside a period of time for prayer.
  • Congress announced a day of "fasting, humiliation and prayer" in 1780.
  • The celebration of Thanksgiving started out as a day of giving thanks and prayer. None other than President Abraham Lincoln made this official in 1863.
Numerous other dates have been set aside as times of prayer. Then, in 1952, President Harry S. Truman declared that for that year and each following, the current president of the United States should dedicate a day of prayer to God on a date of his choice. Pres. Truman's date was April 17th for that year.

President Reagan amended the law in 1988, and made the first Thursday of May each year the National Day of Prayer. In his proclamation, Pres. Reagan stated that "This occasion provides our Nation with 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."

Isn't that amazing? And it wasn't that long ago, either. In doing research for this post, I read the entirety of this document. It isn't very long, and I'd highly recommend you read it. Please take a moment to click HERE.

Since this, many of our presidents have held events at the White House on this day in honor of it. And now, the first Thursday of May every year, the nation joins together in prayer.

Please, the United States needs so much prayer. I'm taking a Constitutional Literacy class and it has only opened my eyes more. America is headed in a direction that is the opposite way from God. Now, even this day dedicated to prayer is being threatened by those who wish to keep "religion" out of "politics."

Pray. This is the only way to bring the United States of America back to Him. The Bible says that if God's people come together, repent, and pray, He will heal their land (2 Chronicles 7:14). That is what we need! Pray right now, pray through the rest of the day, and don't stop praying!


  1. Hey, Bethany! I'm sorry that I haven't commented in awhile, I've just been busy and I think I subscribed to like a BILLION blogs, so, yeah.. xD
    But this is amazing, and so true. We really need more prayer warriors, especially now. I need to work on praying more diligently, so this was a great reminder!

    1. That's okay. Goodness knows I've not been very good at commenting on people's blogs—yours included! So, sorry about that. :)

      Thank you for praying! Have you watched War Room?

  2. This is so true!! The world needs lots of prayer!! I love the movie war room its soo good!!

    1. Isn't it the best? I've watched it twice and each time its been so powerful! And it makes you want to clean out your closet! XD

    2. It is so inspiring!! haha yeah I know that would be cool to have a prayer room:)

  3. Whoa, I didn't know all of this! Thanks for sharing! =)

    You've been tagged... =)


    1. I'm glad you learned some new stuff! And thank you for the tag! :)


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Bethany R.