The Bible exhorts all Christians to pray for "all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence" (I Timothy 2:2).
"Dear God: Make everyone a Christian in America, and Lord, make my mom never cook spinach again," wrote Sarah, age 6.
Although I'm sure my spinach-quiche suggestion would fall on deaf ears, I do commend Sarah's prayer that all Americans come to know the Lord. To expand prayer horizons beyond America, read a book called "Operation World".
It's never too early for children to start praying. The following brief prayer comes from 4-year-old Cale: "Dear God: Keep the ocean and the cowboys safe."
Because the kids who wrote the prayers for this column live in a suburb of Dallas, I wonder if the second half of this prayer is for the Dallas Cowboys.
"Dear God: I pray that the president gets more ideas," wrote Johnathan, 6.
Yes, we should pray that government officials receive godly advice from wise counselors, but we can also pray against evil plans and people. When King David learned that Ahithophel had joined his son's rebellion to take over his throne, he prayed, "O Lord, I pray, turn the counsel of Ahithophel into foolishness!" God answered that prayer.
We need to constantly be in prayer against the plots of evil people like Adam Lanza who murdered 20 innocent children and eight adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. We should pray that the plotting of terrorists and mass killers would be exposed.
We know from the Book of Esther that God has a wonderful way of letting evil people hang themselves with their own plans. Esther schemed with Mordecai to expose the conspiracy of Haman, an evil man who wanted to kill all Jews and especially Mordecai.
Haman was hanged on the gallows he had prepared for Mordecai.
Ryan, 10, provides an example of a prayer for righteousness to prevail: "Dear God: Please help the president to make the right decisions. Help make this country to still stand strong."