U.S. pastor Andrew Brunson visited President Trump Saturday and prayed for him in the Oval Office, less than a day after Brunson was released from a Turkish prison.
Trump called it a “bipartisan” effort to free Brunson.
“We’ve been negotiating long and hard,” Trump told reporters. “We do not pay ransom in this country… Otherwise you have big problems.”
Brunson’s family joined him in the Oval Office. He was accused of spying and aiding terrorists in Turkey but denied all charges.
On Friday he was sentenced to three years in prison yet was released because he had been detained for two years, Reuters reported. Brunson’s release could improve relations between the two countries.
“You really fought for us,” Brunson told Trump.
Trump said he and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke about Brunson’s situation “at least once a day.”
Brunson knelt on one knee, put his hand on Trump’s shoulder, and prayed for the president.
“Father God I ask that you’d pour out your Holy Spirit on President Trump, that you give him supernatural wisdom to accomplish all the plans you have for this country,” Brunson said. “I ask that you give him wisdom to lead this country into righteousness. I ask that you’d give him perseverance and endurance and courage to stand for truth. I ask that you protect him from slander from enemies, from those who would undermine.
“I ask that you’d make him a great blessing to this country and fill him with your wisdom and strength and perseverance,” Brunson prayed. “And we bless him. Make him be a great blessing to our country. In Jesus’ name, we bless you. Amen.”
Brunson’s wife, Norine, also prayed: “I just want to pray that the Spirit of the Lord will rest of the president, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and fear of the Lord.”
Trump thanked the Brunsons for the prayers.
“I need it probably more than anybody in this room,” Trump said.
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.
Photo courtesy: Andrew & Norine Brunson Facebook Page
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, The Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.