Devotionals for Working Women
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Matthew 5:44, 47 (NLT)
But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!... If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that.

Usually what Jesus tells us to do is contrary to what we want to do. During our working life we can create friendships that last forever.

Unfortunately, sometimes we also create enemies that also last forever unless we make changes to stop the situation. The only way to stop enemies from hurting us, and to keep our hearts pure of unforgiveness, is by praying for them.

It is hard if we try to pray and forgive on our own but God can help us pray for our enemies. Many of us don’t have big enemies, but there are people who don’t like us as well as others, individuals whom we rub the wrong way, and others who simply don’t like us for whatever reason.

During my working life, I have experienced what praying for those who have hurt me does. It first transforms my heart. I forgive that person and start seeing them through the eyes of Jesus, with His compassion. Then, even if their behavior continues, it doesn’t bother me anymore.

I have also experienced a change in me when I started praying for somebody I didn’t like for whatever reason. The Lord put a special interest in me to get to know that person and whatever bothered me about them before disappears.

That’s when I know I have attained the victory over that situation. We, as followers of Christ, have to differentiate ourselves from the world, the pagans. We also all have one enemy in common— Satan, the enemy of our soul.

In that case, we don’t pray for him. We pray against him and his devices. With prayer we obtain the victory against all his plots.

Source: Devotions for Working Women by Marcia Malzahn.
Excerpt permission granted by Expert Publishing, Inc.

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