Daily Hope & a Prayer – March 26

“To you who are ready for the truth, I say this: Love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer for that person. If someone slaps you in the face, stand there and take it. If someone grabs your shirt, giftwrap your best coat and make a present of it. If someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff. Live generously. Luke 6:27-30 (MSG)

Dear Father,

Thank you for the the demonstration of humility and self-sacrificing love shown through the life and death of Jesus. Thank you for the eternal life that it offered me, and for the abundant life it offers me here on earth. I am continually in awe that a perfect, loving, and merciful God would desire to use someone so stubbornly sinful, prideful, and unforgiving as I. The closer I move toward You, the clearer I see my need for You. And my need is great.

Lord, please soften my heart toward those who would attempt to use me or take advantage of me. Help me to surrender, to you, any opportunity to vindicate myself. Give me the courage to allow You to use my actions of love and mercy to demonstrate Your love and mercy, and point others toward Christ. Remind me that You desire to be glorified through my humility and forgiveness. Teach me how to fix my gaze on You, so that I might have the strength to forgo resisting my enemy in a manner that lacks love or grace.  Replace pride, anger, and bitterness with gentleness and hope.

If I have loved ones who have been hurt by others, give me godly words of wisdom and encouragement. Keep me from reacting out of my love and hurt for them. Prevent me from offering them advice that is contrary to your perfect will. Use me to model a life of generous love toward my enemies. And when I should fall short of your will, give me a repentant heart and if possible, a second opportunity to choose to offer and model love and grace. Thank you for your grace.

In Jesus name I pray this,

Amen

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