A few days ago a read a prayer that said; "Father, I need Your strength. By faith, I choose to receive Your grace so that I may forgive those who mistreated or wronged me. I ask You to bless them and help me go on with my life. In Jesus' name, amen."
There are two major parts to this prayer that I find imperative to analyze.
1. FORGIVE THOSE WHO MISTREATED OR WRONGED ME. So many times we find ourselves coming to a cross road in our lives when we are wronged by someone. Whether it be a close friend, a family member or even someone you just met, you are faced with the decision to either forgive them and move on, or dwell on the thought that they wronged you. Sometimes the dwelling can be portrayed with a finger out the window, or lowered eyebrows and a pouted face. Sometimes, it can be shown through years of silence or an act of vengeance. However, we know that keeping those feelings inside is harmful and it isn't how God wants us to spend our days. If that's the case, though, why is it so hard to forgive sometimes?
Yes, it is difficult to let go of someone who didn't treat you fairly, but the awesome things about it all is that before you can forgive them, you can ask God, the REAL judge to forgive them first. Praying this part of the prayer gives you and certain sense of security in knowing that if Christ forgave them, so can I.
2. BLESS THEM. So very powerful! Imagine that you are 5 years old and you are running around your house enjoying a delicious cone of cookie dough ice cream with sprinkles. Your favorite. Then, your cousin, who is visiting for the day, comes to where you are, and just knocks the ice cream off your cone and onto the floor. You are infuriated. The LAST thing on your mind is to pray for them. Well, that's what God has called us to do. Forgive and pray for them, BLESS THEM. Wish them well, pray for their well being. This, has been one of the hardest, but most fulfilling things I've done. I urge you to try it.
"But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" Matthew 5:44
I encourage you to let go of the ones that have hurt you and give it to God, and go beyond your limits and pray for them and love them, as Christ has loved us despite the pain that we cause Him!