Monday, November 7, 2011

November 8, 2011

EKG Devotional Day 32

"Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors."   Matthew 6:12

When Jesus taught His disciples to pray, He prayed: "Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors."  Do we honestly want God to forgive us in the same stingy way we often distribute our forgiveness to others? It is truly a chilling thought.

Forgiveness is at the heart of kingdom relationships. To begin with, we cannot become kingdom people at all without first experiencing the forgivness of God.

Throughout our lives this recognition of God's holiness and our sinfulness continues to drive us to prayer, seeking our Father's forgiveness. As kingdom children, we place so much value on the intimacy we enjoy with our Dad, we can't allow anything to hinder our relationship - even for a brief moment. We need forgiveness and we know it. So we go to our Father in prayer.

Have you ever thought that prayer is really a family affair - not just conversation between Father and child but also a way to remind ourselves that we are members of the family of God, that we are in community with one another? In all of the statements of request found in the Lord's Prayer, al of the pronouns Jesus used are plural: "Give us today our daily bread.'" "'Do not bring us into temptation.'" "'Deliver us from the evil one.'"

We don't just pray for ourselves. We pray for one another.

And the request for forgiveness is no different. "'Forgive us our debts, as we also forgive or debtors.'"

So for the same reason that I cannot pray for my own "daily bread" while remaining unconcerned for my brother;s lack of bread, I cannot receive God's forgiveness for myself without being prepared to dispense an equal portion to others. Forgiveness must go botj ways in our lives, or we're not going anywhere in thekingdom.

Pray for others' needs as well as your own. Ask God to reveal those needs to you so  that you can pray specifically.