Good Evening, God
Sunrise does seem to lend itself to Newness. And I am in deep need of Newness. The phrase came from our church’s Stewardship campaign. We are using the verse from Isaiah 43:18-19:
“Do not remember the former things,
Or ponder the things of the past.
“Listen carefully, I am about to do a new thing,
Now it will spring forth;
Will you not be aware of it?
I will even put a road in the wilderness,
Rivers in the desert.
My heart is worn down from the fear, anger and hate of these last few years. Now, God, I accept responsibility for my participation. I have been fast to judge. I have condemned without hearing. And I have enjoyed the feeling of “being RIGHT”. Not just right, but “better than those I judged as WRONG”. This is painful to acknowledge.
Back in April I felt You urging me to pray for 10 minutes a day for those who have despitefully used me. Only, since no-one was despitefully using me, I decided I would pray for someone despitefully using the PLANET. It took months, God! Months! But, what happened was that I lost my knee-jerk hatred. The filter that had instantly taken the “other side” lost its power. And, I moved on to praying for other people. . . slowly coming to see . . . that I could detest what they were doing without despising them.
I found myself really praying for them. Praying as if they were friends. Praying for the healing of their heart wounds. And I began to understand a bit more of what You meant when you told us to “Overcome Evil with Good.”
How appropriate to be writing about this on Martin Luther King Day. What a shining example, God, You have given us of the power of praying for those who despitefully use us. Plus huge heaps of love and forgiveness.