"Ask God to bless those people that say bad things to you. Pray for those people that are mean to you."
— Luke 6:28 NLT
Prayer has the power to change us. We can change as we see God's power work in someone who has cursed and/or hurt us and make that person into a better person. 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. We praise him for the magnificent God he is and the incredible things he has done as we open ourselves to the work of the Holy Spirit involved in prayer. God can change our hearts as we seek to honor him by doing what is right. In this case, it 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 not what I want." 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 ultimately find their way into the Kingdom and become our brother or sister in Christ. We must pray!
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. Help me release all vindictiveness, desires for vengeance, and cultivated bitterness and malice. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- Luke 22:46
- Galatians 5:18-26
- 1 Peter 3:9
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.
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.