A Prayer for Extending the Kindness of God to Others

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     But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior. Tit. 3:4-6 (ESV)

     Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? Rom. 2:4 (NASB)

     Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Col. 3:12 (NIV)

     Dear heavenly Father, I praise you for being so kind, gentle, and patient with me. When I consider the difference between how much I know and how well I love, I am compelled to worship you for the truth and riches of the gospel. You don’t love me to the degree I love others; you love me to the degree you have hidden my life in Christ, which is completely. This good news is my peace, hope, and my joy.

     It’s also the basis, and rocket fuel, of my repentance. Even as your kindness continues to lead me to repentance, and to more of Jesus, so I repent, Father. I repent of nourishing lingering resentments. I repent of holding onto to a few hurts a little tighter than others. I repent of not being as quick to forgive, heal, and move on as you intend.

     I acknowledge what you already know to be true; I’ve enjoyed the role of victim a little more than I’ve relished the thought being a peacemaker. Avoidance has been easier than hoping. But Father, I now crave freedom more than I “need” justice. The only justice I need has been meted out on at the cross, where Jesus died for my sin, and you reconciled me to yourself.

     So, Father, as I reach for the garments of grace—compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience, I trust you for strength to extend to others the same loving-kindness you have poured on me richly in Jesus. Bring glory to yourself, and I bring my convicted and grateful heart to you. So very Amen I pray, in Jesus tender and loving name. 

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