Praying for our Leaders and LEOs
Briefing: Do you pray for your leaders? Do you pray for your FTO, Sergeant, or chain-of-command? Do you pray for your Chief?
Dispatch (Assignment): Read Psalm 72.
On the Street: The grandness of this psalm should be overwhelming for any leader who has the imperative characteristic of humility. Being a leader is a big responsibility and cannot be taken lightly. I love the story of Solomon in 2 Chronicles chapter 1, when God gave him the proverbial blank check. “That night God appeared to Solomon and said to him, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.” Solomon said, “Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?” Solomon set an example for all leaders to follow. No politics, no corruption, no personal agendas, just a desire to follow God’s desire for the shepherding of His people.
When you have God giving you His wisdom and His knowledge, and you imitate the character of Jesus Christ, then everything else will fall into place. This is a great encouragement for any leader. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6.
We all follow leaders. Our responsibility is to pray for them. Psalm 72:15 (last half of the verse) says, “May people ever pray for him and bless him all day long.” How often do you pray for your leaders? I’m not just talking about the ones you like, the Bible does not distinguish between perceived good and bad, it requires us to pray for all leaders.
Psalm 72 starts out with, “Endow the king with your justice, O God, the royal son with your righteousness.” What would our local government look like if we all followed the prototype of this psalm? All of God’s people are called to pray for our government officials, law enforcement, its leaders and administrators. Verse 14 makes it very clear that law enforcement is a part of this call to prayer. Law enforcement is the extension/branch of government that carries out justice. The “he” in this psalm speaks to both the leader and law enforcement, “He will rescue them from oppression and violence, for precious is their blood in his sight.”
Because every law enforcement officer is a leader and guardian of their communities and jurisdictions, I would suggest this chapter applies to all peace officers. There is a promise in verse two that should convince everyone to follow this teaching. Again, the “He” should imply the leader or LEO (law enforcement officers), “He will judge your people in righteousness, your afflicted ones with justice.” This should be the desire of every community, to have their leaders and LEOs lead with justice and righteousness.
Verse 4 could be the mission statement of the guardian, “He will defend the afflicted among the people and save the children of the needy; He will crush the oppressor.” Is this not the goal of the peace keeper?
Verses 5 through 14 are the blessing to be bestowed on the people whose leaders live lives dedicated to God’s righteousness. These leaders live to imitate the leadership qualities of Christ, who, by the way, is the greatest leader of all time. The Bible is a written account of His leadership and a blueprint for all God’s people to follow. With this understanding, every leader should know God’s Word and follow it, thereby leading by God’s leadership manual.
In Deuteronomy, chapter 17, there is a section that addresses the appointment of a new leader. It gives several requirements for the newly appointed leader as well as a direction to go in order to rule in righteousness. The most important duty of the new leader is to read and understand the scriptures, or we would say, the Bible. A leader cannot rule God’s way if he/she does not understand what God’s way is. This applies to the LEO as well. How can you govern God’s people if you don’t understand what God’s requirements are?
This psalm gives us several assignments but the greatest two are to pray for our leaders, our law enforcement officers, sergeants, lieutenants, captains, assistant chiefs, deputy chiefs, chiefs, sheriffs, and SACs. This also includes politicians, leaders of organizations, anyone in a position of authority, and our president. This is non-negotiable.
The second is the absolute necessity of reading your Bible. If you don’t like to read, we live in a time where you can buy audio books, download free Bible apps, or join Bible study groups. We have no excuse. I can promise you, it will be the most beneficial book you ever read, or listen to.
Investigational Resources: Psalm 21, 24, Deuteronomy 17:14-20.
Officer Safety Principle: “Praise be to His glorious name forever; may the whole earth be filled with His glory. Amen and Amen.” Psalm 72:19.
from Psalms Through the Eyes of a Cop, Volume 1
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
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