Prayers for the Undeserving

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” John 13:34

As I have loved you.

You must love one another.

Quite the request, Lord.  It was in your heart all along, wasn’t it?  “Love my people.  Do unto others.  Feed my lambs.”

It’s a breeze to love you, Lord, so perfect and kind.  But people?

Even the best pastors, leaders, teachers, people who know better…  They fail.

You want me to love them with complete, sacrificial love?  Pray for those who hurt me?  Forgive them deeply from my heart?

I’d tell you it’s impossible because you’d tell me, “with God all things are possible.”

I’d remind you what they did to me because you’d say, “look what they did to me.”

You’d repeat the word, love, as deep calls to deep…. You’d look straight into my soul with sweet receiving eyes…


Such an overused word, yet I know how you use it.

With grace.

You bring someone to mind… stretch my obedience, ask me to fall into your strength.

The lady who gossiped, the man who overstepped his bounds…

You want me to pray for them now.  Love them with prayer.  Serve you in the secret place.

I guess if I truly love you, I need to bless those who wrong me.

Knowing what’s right and not doing it is wrong.  Life-sapping.

I know love surrenders and wins.  Always.

I know because you show me.

I know.

So I surrender.

To love.

What kinds of things happen when you pray for your enemies?

Have you, like Jesus, been betrayed by a friend?  Did God do a love miracle in your heart?  In your relationship?

It’s contest time!

Share a comment below OR share this post on Facebook or Twitter and let me know, and I’ll randomly pick a winner to receive a FREE copy of my Zondervan gift book, “A Friend in the Storm.”  Those who share in both places will be entered twice.


BONUS!  I’m guest-blogging at my agency’s blog today!  Please click here to visit!


  1. Victoria Zumbrum |

    People have hurt and betrayed me before but I always forgive them. I don’t hold grudges and I don’t want to hurt them back. I just dont understand why they would do that to me. I know God’s love is unconditional and he will always be there for me.

    • I’m sorry about your hurt and betrayal, Victoria.

      I think we’ve all been on the giving and receiving end of it, in one way or the other. Nobody has experienced it like Jesus though. He truly knows what it’s like to be hurt by the sin nature of others. While dying for us, He prayed, “Father, forgive them. They don’t know what they’re doing.” That’s what I call prayer for the undeserving.

      Jesus is our example; and we’re never more like Him than when we forgive and pray for those who hurt us. We can only do it by yielding our will to His strength though.

      God bless you, Victoria!

    • Congratulations Victoria!! You’re today’s winner!!

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