January 13, 2022 – Mark 11: 20-26 – Forgiveness and Prayer

Today we are reading from Mark 11: 20-26:

20 In the morning as they passed by, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots. 21 Then Peter remembered and said to him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered.” 22 Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God. 23 Truly I tell you, if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and if you do not doubt in your heart, but believe that what you say will come to pass, it will be done for you. 24 So I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

25 “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; so that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.”

This is an interesting passage, it deals with forgiveness and prayer. But look at what is happening.  Peter is amazed that Jesus said that something would be cursed and later it died.  Jesus says, that’s nothing, believe what you ask, and it will happen.  

Then He talks about forgiveness.  

Jesus is talking about believing and the greater things that will happen when they believe and pray.  Greater things that may not seem possible, greater things that are beyond them.  Greater things than they can imagine. 

What is that greater thing? Forgiveness.  

Forgiveness is hard, y’all.  It is something that we know we should do. Something that we know is essential to the Christian faith, something that Jesus teaches us and models for us. Something that matters greatly to us. 

And it is hard. 

And it is something that we can’t do ourselves. Forgiveness is something that comes through prayer.  The person right now that we do not want to forgive, you can’t will it. You can’t make yourself do it.  Now, you can make yourself say the words.  You can make yourself go through the motions.  You can make yourself act like. 

But you can’t make yourself change your heart.  You can’t make yourself release it. That’s a gift of grace. That’s a gift of God. And that comes through prayer.  

Forgiveness flows from prayer. That is where it happens. That is where the rubber hits the road.  Prayer.  So, today, that person that you know you need to forgive.  Do you know what your first step is?  

Pray for them. And pray about it. Do it tomorrow. And the next day. And the next.  And the next.  And eventually, through Gods’ grace, forgiveness will come. But not through our will. Through His grace.   

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