“ In accordance with your great love, forgive the sin of these people, just as you have pardoned them from the time they left Egypt until now.” The Lord replied, “I have forgiven them, as you asked. Nevertheless, as surely as I live and as surely as the glory of the Lord fills the whole earth,“ – Numbers 14:19-21.

In the Pray First – a Personal Prayer Guide, there is a section entitled Warfare Prayers – Forgiveness Prayer. That is the subject of this devotional.

People sometimes ask “Is there a prayer I could pray that will help me forgive, and if so, how often should I pray it?” Over time, we often come to the realization that the only answer for the anger and bitterness we feel is to discover the healing power of forgiveness. They want to forgive, but discover that it is not easy. Because what does forgiveness look like when your character has been assassinated? What does forgiveness look like when people have cheated you, or assaulted you?

There are no words that allow you to wash away the deep hurts in life. But there is power in forgiveness and there is power in prayer. Take the people that hurt or wronged you to Jesus individually in prayer, one by one. Tell God what you are feeling and ask God to give you the power to forgive. Rather than laying out your hurts and the justification for how we feel about others, talk to God about it. He is the only one who can keep your heart soft and sensitive to Him and others and give you the power to forgive. I am convinced that if we pray for people who have hurt us, we will have the ability to react in love.

We know that forgiveness is a way of life for a Christian. Do not take it for granted. Do not assume it will just happen. It is continuous process. So pray continually to help you forgive continually. Regardless of what has been said, written, or presumed about you, let it go. Take it to the Lord in prayer. Forgive as many times as is necessary. Then, let it go. You cannot go forward holding onto a past hurt. You cannot go forward with resentment running through your veins. Let it go.

“Marty, that is a heavy price tag for me to pay when it was the other person who is at fault.” That makes sense.  But remember that not forgiving you will cost you more. We should also remember that when we forgive those who have sinned against us we are only doing what Christ did when he forgave us first.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What is forgiveness to you?
  2. Is there power in forgiveness? Why or why not?
  3. What happens if I don’t forgive?
  4. Read Matthew 6:14-15: What is this passage telling you about forgiveness?
  5. 6-Day Challenge: Pray and ask God this week to give you the power to forgive.