A Prayer for Your Enemies - Your Daily Prayer - August 30

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A Prayer for Your Enemies
By Emma Danzey

Matthew 5:44 says, “But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”

It is extremely easy to pray for those in our families, our friends, and for ourselves. However, it is a whole new ballgame when we realize that Jesus called us not only to pray for those who we like but also for our enemies. He even goes as far as to say to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. This means the bullies, the evil leaders, the harsh coworkers, the rough family members, and the most terrible of people can be prayed for in the power of Jesus.

Who do you feel is your enemy today? Who in your life is overwhelmingly discouraging or wrong to you? Jesus is not saying that we should be victimized and abused, so please set healthy boundaries in place. He is, however, saying that we are called to pray for those who are difficult and hurtful. We cannot do this on our own, but with the help of the Holy Spirit, we can have true strength to pray over those who seem the furthest away from Christ. We can remember the apostle Paul as we pray. He started out as Saul, a persecutor of Christians, and killed them. Then, Jesus pursued him, and he came to faith in Christ, changing his name to Paul. We never know if a person was praying for Saul to know Jesus. A man who appeared to be a great enemy of the church then became one of the greatest evangelists of all time. We have to remember that Jesus is capable of changing any heart.

Matt 5:44, inspirational image

Let's Pray:

Dear Lord,
I know that ultimately my greatest enemy is the Devil. There is a real spiritual battle going on all around me. The great enemy is using people around me to accomplish his work. Help me to remember this when others hurt or persecute me for my faith in You. Father, would You please give me Your heart of forgiveness and hope for my enemies? Ephesians 6:10-12 says, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” Would You enable me to love them well and live like You in front of them? Even when they try to get me down, help me to be strong in you and have the full armor of God on.

God help me to remember that Paul started off as Saul, and if you could transform the life of a Christian-killer, you can change any heart. Help me not to put those who live against me in a box. Remind me that You say in 2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” God, give me this same heart that desires repentance and transformation. Help me not to lose hope that You are working. Give me the words to pray over them.

Lord, please save the souls of those who are my enemies. Show them Your love and Your salvation. Give them the same joy that I have been given to be Your child. I pray that I would not hinder them from seeing Christ, but I would encourage them and show them true love through You.

God, I pray for those who seem like enemies but claim to be believers in You. Help me to love the body of Christ well, even those with whom I disagree or feel hurt by. We are all broken and I pray that you would bless them and meet them in whatever they are going through and help me to be loving and kind by Your Spirit. I pray against the attacks of the true enemy who wants to divide and ruin the work of believers. I pray that my enemy among the church would see true forgiveness and love in me.

Father, I was once Your enemy. Colossians 1:21-22 says, “Once you were alienated from God and were hostile in your minds, engaging in evil deeds. But now He has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy, unblemished, and blameless in His presence.” Thank You for the way that You have reconciled me, a former enemy of You. Help me to extend this opportunity of grace through Jesus to others. Amen.

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Emma DanzeyEmma Danzey’s mission in life stems from Ephesians 3:20-21, to embrace the extraordinary. One of her greatest joys is to journey with the Lord in His Scriptures. She is wife to Drew and mom to Graham. Emma serves alongside her husband in ministry, she focuses most of her time in the home, but loves to provide articles on the Bible, life questions, and Christian lifestyle. Her article on Interracial Marriage was the number 1 on Crosswalk in 2021. Most recently, Emma released Treasures for Tots, (Scripture memory songs) and multiple books and devotionals for young children. During her ministry career, Emma has released Wildflower: Blooming Through Singleness, two worship EP albums, founded and led Polished Conference Ministries, and ran the Refined Magazine. You can view her articles on her blog at emmadanzey.wordpress.com and check out her Instagram @Emmadanzey.

Related Resource: Remember God's Enduring Love for You in this Guided Meditation on Psalm 100!

This guided Christian meditation from Psalm 100 will help you experience and praise God for his unending love for you. Become aware of God’s presence with you, and praise God for his loyal and enduring love from the beginning of time and into the future. Listen to every episode of the So Much More Podcast on LifeAudio.com, or subscribe on Apple or Spotify so you never miss an episode!

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Originally published Wednesday, 30 August 2023.