Sunday, November 1
Scripture: Job 23-24, Mark 11-12
Mark 11:25 But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins, too.
Jesus was teaching on prayer and faith when He inserted this idea: when you are praying, first forgive anyone for anything. Evidently, prayer is not only to connect us with our Father, but also with our brothers and sisters.
I thought of times when my kids were fighting. If one of them asked me for something, I’d say, “First, let’s make up with your brother or sister.”
That’s what is going on here. Our Father wants us to get along, and that starts with grace—with forgiveness. We will fail each other—that’s certain. Will we forgive each other? That’s the question. And it seems that our success in prayer is connected with our ability to forgive.
I must forgive. I must forgive for my own sake—for my relationship with God, my relationships with people, and my own spiritual and mental and emotional health. Unforgiveness only punishes me—not the other person. They may not deserve my forgiveness—but I do!
Here’s the practical step that Jesus gave: When you pray, first forgive anyone for anything. One of our first steps in prayer ought to be confession of our own sins and forgiveness for anyone else.
Prayer: Lord, show me if I’m holding unforgiveness in my heart, and help me to forgive anyone anything every time.