Matthew 6:9-15 (NIV)

9 “This, then, is how you should pray: ” ‘Our Father1 in heaven, hallowed be your name,10 your kingdom2 come, your will be done3 on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread.4 12 Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.5 13 And lead us not into temptation,6 but deliver us from the evil one.a7 14 For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.8 15 But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.9

Matthew 6:12 (NIV)

12 Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.1                            

DEVOTION – Sarah Negroni (Louisiana)

I could not understand how someone I trusted could have committed such a horrible offense against me.  The person had broken my trust so much that it seemed that everything I believed about the relationship was wrong.  I was devastated and angry.  Alone in my room, I tried to pray.  “Dear God,”  I began, but I couldn’t finish.  The only thing I could do in mu anguish was cry and moan.  I spoke with my sister-in-law, someone who has also been a spiritual sister to me, about my inability to pray.  She suggested that I try praying the Lord’s Prayer until I was able to put what was on my heart into words.

Even though it was difficult to do, I recited the prayer.  When I got to “Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us, I couldn’t continue.  I suddenly realized that I had done this very same ting to someone else years before.  I wondered if that person had been as distraught as I had been in the past few days.

Too often I overlook the Lord’s Prayer as something I say without really thinking about it.  This experience helped me understand how important this prayer is, how important it is for me to forgive others, and how much I need God’s forgiveness.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: We need to forgive as much as we need to be forgiven.

PRAYER: Dear God, help us to remember the forgiveness you have shown us.  Give us strength to offer that forgiveness to others as we pray,  “Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom some.  Give u each day our daily bread.  Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.  And lead us not into temptation” (Luke 11:2-4, NIV).