Jesus’ Prayers – Thu – 23-02-09

Many challenges in life are difficult. Take athletes. They often face a burning desire to quit. They push themselves on the track or in the gym. They struggle to go longer and faster. They strain to lift more or leap higher. They stretch themselves to develop skills and stamina. They battle the fatigue that drains their desire to achieve.

But sometimes, the challenges in life are physical exhaustion. The challenge is mental. And sometimes the challenge is to know when to let go. And to do it. To let go of the bitterness and hate focused on those who have wounded us.

For me, one of the most challenging prayers of Jesus came on the day he died. Listen to it in Luke 23:33-34, ‘When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals–one on his right, the other on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.’ (NIV 1984)

Jesus modeled what he taught. He prayed for his enemies even as they drove spikes through his flesh. Not only did he forgive them, he asked God the Father to forgive them as well. Today, pray for those who have hurt you. Ask God to forgive them for what they’ve done to you.

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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.