16 Mar He Chose to Pray (Forty Days with Jesus – Day 9, Feb 26th)
Read Matthew 6:5-15
Thought for the Day: When forgiveness feels elusive, I need to pray!
Corrie Ten Boom lived a life of amazing, courageous faith both during and after her experiences in the Holocaust. A few years after her imprisonment, she spoke at a church on the power of forgiveness. At the end of her talk, she was chatting with members of the congregation and a man came forward who she immediately recognized. He had been the most vicious guard at Ravensbruck and one responsible for much of the suffering of both Corrie and her late sister. But, what he said next floored her. “You mentioned Ravensbrück in your talk. I was a guard there… But since that time, I have become a Christian. I know that God has forgiven me for the cruel things I did there, but I would like to hear it from your lips as well. Fraulein, will you forgive me?”
In that moment, Corrie froze and didn’t know how to respond. Here she was speaking on forgiveness in a church and she was suddenly face-to-face with the cruelest person she had ever met. But, she remembered that forgiveness is not an emotion we experience. Rather it is an action. So, she prayed and asked Jesus to give her the strength to lift her hand to accept this man’s apology.
Jesus chose to pray throughout His time on earth. He prayed when performing miracles, when teaching, when feeling drained, when spending time with His friends, and even when experiencing trying times. Jesus chose to pray even though He is fully God. He even gave us the Lord’s Prayer as an example for when we are unsure how to go to God in prayer. Even in the most trying times in our lives, let’s learn to pray and ask for the strength we need to do the most important things (like forgive those who wrong us).
Reflect & Pray – At the times when I don’t have the strength to do the right thing, do I have the courage to pray? Am I living a life of prayer? God give me the strength to consistently come to You in prayer at all times!