How to Pray for Reconciliation in Relationships
Have you ever experienced the pain, confusion, and hurt of a broken relationship? Through the myriad of emotions these hurt relationships evoke, you must look at someone who understands the pain and heartache we feel.
Have you ever experienced the pain, confusion, and hurt of a broken relationship? Maybe an argument with a dear friend dissolved a relationship that you cherished. Maybe your soul mate abandoned the partnership that you thought would last forever. It could have been that a beloved family member made choices that you don’t support, and a distance has widened between you.
Regardless of the situation, there is one thing that all broken relationships have in common, and that is the myriad of emotions they evoke. From anger to grief, from sadness to relief, our feelings run the gamut. How do we pray for reconciliation when our hearts are overwhelmed with these mixed emotions?
Well, first we need to understand what reconciliation actually is. To reconcile means restore something to harmony or friendship, or to resolve something that had been unsettled (Merriam Webster).
Of course, we want to walk out Romans 12:18 which tells us “if it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”
In 2 Corinthians 13:11, Paul gives us a very similar command. “…Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.”
Yet sometimes, we can’t see a way to mend a broken relationship or bring about the reconciliation we hope for.
That’s why the next step is to look at someone who understands the pain and heartache we feel. Jesus lived a life where he was constantly surrounded by his accusers, those who hated him, those who betrayed him, and those who were against him. Yet, he showed love and walked in peace. He is our example when we look at that broken relationship in front of us and feel the overwhelming swirl of emotions, yet are determined to choose love and peace.
To reconcile hurt relationships, we follow Jesus' lead.
- We can pray to see the other person as Jesus does. Be it sitting beside a woman at a well or standing at the foot of a tree where a tax collector hid in its’ branches, Jesus saw a beloved child of God who was worthy of love, kindness, and forgiveness.
- We can pray to forgive as Jesus forgives. Even as he hung nailed to a cross while death approached, Jesus prayed for forgiveness for those who were crucifying him.
- We can pray to love as Jesus loves. Jesus set the bar high when it comes to love. His love is a gift that can’t be earned. It is freely given to all who accept it.
- We can pray for God’s will to be done. When we feel completely overwhelmed and broken-hearted, Jesus still stands as our example. He was familiar with this feeling and prayed for God’s will to be done.
As Christ followers, we know that we want to continue to grow and mature in our faith in a way that makes us look more and more like the Jesus we love. Because Jesus knows and understands everything we are going through and experienced it himself, we can follow His lead. He offers us a plan for reconciliation in our broken, human relationships as we follow his example and pray to see the other person as Jesus does, pray to forgive as Jesus forgives, pray to love as Jesus loves, and pray for God’s will to be done.
Finally, we need to realize that not only is Jesus our example as we pray for reconciliation in our relationships, he is also the one who offers us reconciliation to God the Father.
2 Corinthians 5:16-21 clearly calls us to do what we can to seek reconciliation with others:
So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sinfor us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Jesus practices what he preached. He walked in love and lived in peace while he was on this Earth to set the example of how we should live, and now, seated on the throne of Heaven, he intercedes on our behalf to offer us reconciliation as well.
A Prayer of Reconciliation for Broken Relationships
We love you. Thank you for sending Jesus Christ to be an example of someone who walked in love and sought peace, even in the hardest circumstances. God, we ask that you give us eyes to see the other person in this broken relationship in the way that you see them. Give us the ability to forgive as you forgive. Triune God, help us to love in the same unconditional way that you do. In this relationship, we pray for your will to be done.
Thank you, Father, for sending your Son, Jesus, to be our example, but even more we thank you that we are reconciled to you through him.
In Jesus name, we pray,
Bobbie Schaeperkoetter is a writer, speaker, community builder, and an encourager of women at http://www.bobbieschae.com. She’s doing her best to honor God in the craziness of everyday life and she’d love to walk alongside you as you do the same. You can connect with Bobbie through her website or on Instagram at http://www.instagram.com/bobbieschae or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bobbieschae
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