Thousands of Christians gathered at Louisiana State University’s basketball arena Saturday for “The Response” prayer rally, hosted by Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), who called for a spiritual revival — not politics — to heal America.
Putting his faith before politics, Jindal bypassed an invitation to Saturday’s Iowa Freedom Summit, where a crowded field of about 10 potential Republican presidential candidates gathered to address issues they stand for before next year’s election. Instead, Jindal led an all-day prayer rally sponsored by American Family Association (AFA), where he urged attendees join in a revival — one that would “begin right here, right here in our hearts.”
Deemphasizing politics during the six-hour event known as The Response, Jindal focused on Americans’ faith in God, prayer and return to the biblical values — upon which the United States was founded — as the solution to the nation’s woes.
“Today is about humbling ourselves before the Lord,” Jindal told the thousands in attendance as LSU in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. “Today we repent for our sins.”
Prayer — not politics
Jindal made it clear Saturday that the prayer rally was not a step on the campaign trail — as many are anxiously anticipating his declared candidacy to become a Republican presidential contender.
“Today is not a political event — it’s a religious event,” Jindal asserted. “It’s not a political event.”
Jindal emphasized that true change only comes from God and surrendered hearts to Him — not from policies coming out of the White House. He urged Christians in attendance and those viewing the livestreamed event to spread the Gospel in order to elicit real and lasting change.
“We can’t just elect a candidate to fix our country,” Jindal contended. “We can’t just pass a law and fix what ails our country. We need a spiritual revival to fix what ails our country.”
nstead of using the prayer rally as a vehicle to attack President Barack Obama’s policies that run contrary to Christian values, Jindal urged attendees Saturday to pray with him for the Commander-in-Chief and his family, as well as for the event’s organizer, AFA.
Ironically, the event was named “The Response: A Call to Prayer for a Nation in Crisis” — a direct contradiction to “The Shadow of Crisis Has Passed” theme touted during the President’s State of the Union address that he gave earlier in the week.
Jindal opened the event and held his Bible — not his political short list — during his appearances on stage, where he prayed and spoke three times. He left briefly to attend the South Louisiana Right to Life March against abortion, also being held at the state capitol on Saturday.
During the event, thousands sang worship songs and raised their hands in prayer and praise to God. Also incorporated into the arena rally were personal testimonies of numerous believers, including Jindal, who shared for 15 minutes with the crowd about his conversion to Christianity from Hinduism as a teen in high school.
Relating to the audience as an everyday person in casual attire — pacing the stage wearing a blazer and blue jeans — Jindal shared about his seven-year journey of becoming a Christian. He told the crowd about a high school friend of his who told him that he and his family would miss him in heaven.
Jindal also recounted to the rally participants how a girl in high school expressed to him her goal of becoming a Supreme Court justice so that she would be able to “save innocent human lives” from being aborted. Another influential moment that Jindal said helped bring him to Christian faith was a revelation he had while viewing a video of Jesus sacrificially dying on the cross for the sins of man.
Jindal then used his early encounters with Christians in high school to show how they helped spur his conversion to Christianity, saying that it would have never taken place if his friends hadn’t shared their faith in Christ with him.
“Let’s all go plant those seeds of the Gospel,” Jindal encouraged those in attendance. “Share the Good News with all whom we encounter.”
Click here to read more.
Michael F. Haverluck