What Jesus Did! 'The Power of Prayer to Change and Redeem' — Luke 6:28

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

[Jesus continued his teaching on our interactions with others, commanding,] "Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you."

— Luke 6:28 NLT

Key Thought

Prayer has the power to change us. We can change as we see God's power work in people who have cursed and/or hurt us, making them into better people. Seeing their change helps us to continue our changing to be more like Jesus. However, even when folks don't change, prayer changes us as we offer ourselves to God for his service. As we open ourselves to the work of the Holy Spirit as he is involved in our prayer, we praise God for the magnificent God he is and the incredible things he has done. God can change our hearts as we seek to honor him by doing what is right. In this case, "what is right" is praying for those for whom we wouldn't naturally want to pray. Such prayer is an act of faith and submission: "Father, may what is accomplished be what you will, and may I overcome the bitterness at what was done to me." While such prayer is unnatural, we are unnatural! We are God's spiritual children. Redeeming those lost in hate, bitterness, rage, and malice is important to us. Our goal is to have those who mistreat us find their way into the Kingdom and become our brothers or sisters in Christ. We must pray!

Today's Prayer

Father, I know of several people who do not wish me well. They love it when I stumble. They rejoice when I hurt. They delight in my failures. Father, I first ask that they can come to know Jesus and have your Spirit minister to their deepest hurts and transform them into your children. Give me strength as I seek your presence so that you can bless them and so that I can demonstrate your love to them. Help me release all vindictiveness, desires for vengeance, bitterness, and malice. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Luke 22:46
  • Galatians 5:18-26
  • 1 Peter 3:9

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Illustration

Illustration of Luke 6:28 NLT — [Jesus continued his teaching on our interactions with others, commanding,] "Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.