Friday, December 9, 2011

To: Friends & Supporters

From: Carol Bauer

Capital Prayer Alert

As you know, my wife, Carol, prepares a prayer alert about once a month. I hope you will share Carol's thoughts with your friends and fellow worshippers. Thank you for taking an interest in her monthly devotion. -- Gary

Thanksgiving is now a happy memory. The leftovers are gone and family members are safely back home. Christmas lies ahead. It is a time to reflect on the undeserved gift of the Christ child born to save us from our sins. I have resolved to immerse myself in the joy and peace of the season knowing that the year that lies ahead will be a year like none other.

One of the smaller projects that needs to be done this time of year is wrapping up the 2011 calendar and setting up the 2012 calendar. I usually mark birthdays and anniversaries, transferring them from one year to the next. This year I have something new to add. I have put a big red circle around November 6, 2012. And at the top of each month's page I have written, "What have you done about November 6th?" Next year's election could not be more important!

The outlines of the 2012 presidential race are already taking shape, well before the Republican nominee is chosen. The other side has cast their lot with the theme that the election will be about anything but Barack Obama's record. Any objective evaluation of economic growth, unemployment, housing, and a host of other indicators would lead to one conclusion about whether the incumbent is leading the country in the right direction. And so far the polls indicate that Americans overwhelmingly believe the nation is headed in the wrong direction.

It is for these reasons that the campaign is certain to be one of personal attacks and slurs, spin based on shaky facts and massive amounts of money spent to influence independent voters. It will be a very rough ride for principled conservatives, whose grounding is in the truth and who do not want to stoop to the politics of personal destruction.

There is also the unknown factor of voters who are so disenchanted with politics that they have given up on having any impact whatsoever. Will they just stay home? Is their cynicism justified? Add to all of this the desire to pit Americans against each other and it looks like a brutal political year ahead.

Please pray for our country as the months ahead will determine our long-term direction and the future we pass on to our children and grandchildren. Pray that men and women of good will would see past the short-term politics of the moment and be granted the ability and desire to objectively evaluate the direction of the last three years.

Ask God to open the eyes of those who are unable or unwilling to see comparisons to the fate now facing European countries, which are further along on the economic and political road we now travel. Prompt each of us to be moved to action when we look at the youngsters in our lives -- our children or grandchildren. As we wrestle with whether we have done everything within our power to pass on a strong, prosperous country steeped in the values we hold dear pray that we would be open to God's direction to be effective Christian citizens.

So many of our fellow citizens are hurting at a time when Christmas goodwill should define the national mood. Unemployment is high, housing values have dropped dramatically, economic growth is minimal. Hundreds of thousands who had been gainfully employed have either stopped looking for work or have taken part-time jobs just to get by. The nation is hurting and you can see it on the faces of people everywhere. The future looks bleak.

Pray for friends, neighbors or relatives, perhaps even your immediate family, who head into the holidays feeling beaten down and hopeless. Ask God to show you how to demonstrate His love in tangible ways that will uplift those in our lives who are hurting. A special meal with your family, small gifts for children you know who may get little or nothing, an invitation to a Christmas event at your church, a plate of cookies or an anonymous gift of cash, a kind word and a listening ear. We are called to profess our faith by being the hands and feet of Christ this side of eternity. What better expression of love for the baby Jesus than to acknowledge His birth in a way that will truly honor Him.

Blessings to you and your family this Christmas! And thank you for your continued support for the work Gary does day in and day out here in Washington to give voice in the national political conversation to the values we share.

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