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The Prayer of Forgiveness

“Two important things happen,” Moore states, “when we learn to pray honestly about the person who has hurt us: 1. We pour the hurt out rather than allowing it to remain and turn bitter … 2. We articulate our own feelings, thereby placing them in view before our own eyes as well as God’s. This way, we also get a chance to see if something seems ridiculous, out of proportion, or right on target. Our prayers can sometimes help us gain a little insight into our own hearts.”

If we pour out our grievances to God, we won’t be as likely to pour them out to others, which could then cause them to stumble too. Praying “about” those who wrong us saves us from compounding our sin by turning it into gossip, or causing others to harbor the same resentments we do.

Moore says, “Envision your heart like a pitcher …Praying about the person we need to forgive is the means by which we tip that pitcher heavenward and slowly begin to pour our negative feelings and frustrations out to God. As we pour out, a wonderful thing happens: we make room for God to pour in. Our omniscient God knows that a heart heals when a heart changes. Until we make room for fresh contents that change our hearts, we will never be healed from the injury and subsequent feelings of unforgiveness.”

Image: Eberhard Grossgasteiger

The third area of prayer is to pray “for” those whom we need to forgive. Most of us are already aware that we need to do this; however; we often stubbornly hang onto our “right” not to. If we are to be like Christ, we relinquish our “rights” and take on humility, being obedient to the Lord, who says in Mark 11:25, “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

If unforgiveness has been a hindrance to your prayer life in the past, remember that Satan will attack you in this area again—until your victory is firmly established in the strength of Christ Jesus. “If you forgive anyone, I also forgive him. And what I have forgiven—if there was anything to forgive—I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake, in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes” (2 Corinthians 2:7-11).


From Used with permission of the author.

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Category: Fall 2019, Living the Faith

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