According to the Bible, we are not only citizens of heaven (see Phil 3: 20), we are citizens of Leeds and as Christian citizens of Leeds, we should be praying for Leeds. We should pray for the decision makers and leaders of all kinds; both for them to lead well and benefit the city, and also that they personally are reconciled to God (1 Tim 2:1-7). We should pray for the welfare and prosperity of the city as a whole. Jer 29:7 says “seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you’ll find your welfare.”
A decision to pray more for our city would be a good response to the scandals surrounding Sir Jimmy Savile, who was a popular Leeds ‘hero’; and the Leeds Utd ‘fan’ who attacked the Sheffield Wednesday goalkeeper, Chris Kirkland. Both of these events have brought shame on our city.
This makes Leeds Week of Prayer very timely. From the 4th - 11th November, there will be 24 hours of continuous prayer in the bridge Street church prayer room from Saturday 10th at 12 noon to Sunday 11th at 12 noon. Details of this and other prayer meetings can be found on our website.
At St George's we will have our day of prayer and fasting on Tuesday 6th involving 3 prayer meetings at 7:30am, 12:30pm, and 7:30pm: and all this is in addition to our new regular hour of prayer on Thursday mornings at 7:30am.
In the summer a Prayer Relay was organised in the lead up to the Olympic Games, and we in Leeds took part with a dynamic prayer meeting on Woodhouse Moor, involving a great diversity of Christians. God wonderfully answered our prayers for the Olympic and Para-Olympic games.
My aim, for Leeds Week of Prayer, is to get all the Churches and Christians of Leeds praying for our city together. This makes perfect sense if we are all citizens of Leeds as well as citizens of heaven, so please join me in praying for unity among our churches in order to bless the city.
So, let's pray for God's mercy on our city now: that all churches will be renewed and grow, that Christians and churches would come together to bless our city, that through our example and partnerships with many other citizens of goodwill, God will build a good future for all the citizens of Leeds.