This isn’t easy.
I’ve prayed the Holy Spirt would give me the words, but they are like bags of sand—too heavy to lift, so they must be dragged out, one at a time, and heaped up.
Twenty-one Christians lost their lives on a beach at the hands of evil last week.
The Coptic Church has already declared them martyrs.
Some of them could be seen mouthing the words “Lord Jesus Christ” before they were murdered.
The people who murdered them specifically labeled this act of Satan, “A Message Signed With Blood To The Nation Of The Cross.”
And, just yesterday, I read that they have kidnapped somewhere between 70 and 150 Syrian Christians.
They say they are on a holy mission for Allah.
But, like all that Satan says and does, that is a lie.
This is about hatred.
Hatred written in big, bold, red letters.
And, that’s where it gets hard to drag out the words.
Because when I come before Jesus on my knees and ask Him to grant that the Holy Spirit would tell me what to pray for these men, the answer is in Jesus’ own words-- and the words of the One who died and rose again to take away my sins choke me like dried blood in my throat.
“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
They are hard words to speak. Like bags of sand, I have to wrestle and fight to put each one into place.
But those words, like bags of sand next to a rising river, keep the flood of hate and evil from sweeping over and destroying my soul.
Please pray with me:
Father in heaven, the One True God, who sent your only begotten Son to take away the sin of the world, you have told us to bless our enemies and not to curse them. You have told us not to be overcome by evil, but to overcome evil with good.
Lord Jesus, you never said it would be easy to follow you. Lamb of God, we take up the cross and ask that you would bless all those who persecute, torture, and kill your people with salvation.
We ask that your Holy Spirit would soften their hearts, bring them to repentance, and that they would spend eternity in heaven praising the holy name of Jesus—the only name by which men are saved.
We ask that your light and your truth would shine into the darkness and open their eyes, their ears, and their hearts to the lies. We ask that you would deliver them from the evil one. We ask that you would send them dreams and visions of Jesus that they cannot deny or ignore.
Father, we ask that you would prevent these people from further sin by disabling their communications, their equipment, and their weapons. We ask that all who support them or who refrain from speaking out against them would be granted the courage and the ability to tell them, “No, we will not be a part of this.”
To the praise of your glory, Amen.
Because "Father, Forgive" are the words Jesus moaned
When He gave everything that He owned.
(Lyrics from “Everything That I Own” by Jason Gray)