Prayer of Forgiveness
Our reading last week in Jeremiah 31:31-34 reminded us that God renews the covenant and leads us. Morse in A Guidebook to Prayer states,
“The prayer of forgiveness is the work of God’s kingdom, by renewing covenants with God and with others. The basic act of the Savior was forgiveness. The basic response as Christ followers is to respond in kind to others.”
When we seek forgiveness and forgive we are participants in God’s kingdom work as recipients of God’s mercy and grace and extenders of that mercy and grace toward others. In this coming week we are going to take time to engage in forgiveness prayer. It is a prayer that rests in the life and obedience of Christ. Forgiveness prayer is both a journey and a process.
THIS WEEK: Take time to read John 18 - 19:42. You may find it helpful to read the passage several times during the week. Engage in the following prayer as you can during the week.
- Connect with Christ: Which event(s) catches your attention? See yourself there; Imagine walking with Jesus at that place or moment. What would you like to tell Jesus about this time in your life or the situation it involves?
Name the Hurt or Action: This may be a hurt or betrayal that you have experienced or a hurt or betrayal that you sense you have acted toward God. “Lord, here at the foot of the cross I bring the pain of my/our own betrayal and hurt.” Write down and name the feelings/emotions you have about the hurt. Allow several minutes for this part of your prayer.
Let Go: Pray a prayer of release, for example “Lord Jesus, in your pain you forgave the sin and ignorance of others; help me/us to let go and trust you.” Write a prayer releasing the situation (event) or pain to Jesus.
Receive Jesus Response: John 20:1-18. In prayer imagine going from the cross and finding the open tomb.
Respond in Prayer: “Our Messiah, Jesus Christ, we have received your forgiveness for our own sins, and we have asked to forgive the other. We listen now for a resurrection perspective on this act of forgiveness.” (Feel free to write down or journal any thoughts or feelings about this prayer).
Pray the Lord's Prayer: Matthew 6:9-13
This week's prayer experience is taken directly from two excellent books on prayer. MaryKate Morse's, A Guidebook to Prayer: Twenty-four Ways to Walk with God and Christine Sine's, A Journey Into Wholeness.