The deepest wounds are inflicted by those who ought to love us the most but do not. Forgiveness is necessary. It’s like cleaning out a stinking, infected wound before pouring in medication for healing.
Notice in the Lord’s Prayer in Matthew 6 that Jesus added two verses after the Prayer that are too often conveniently overlooked – about forgiveness being necessary for salvation.
Matthew 6:9 In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors.
13 And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.
15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
When forgiveness reigns in our hearts, then Love can begin to take root and grow. You may never say a word about what’s going on inside of you, but those around you will certainly take note of the change in your attitude.
There are many Scriptures about praying for salvation for others. One of my favorites is a passage in Isaiah 45:1-3.
Thus says the Lord to His anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have held to subdue nations before him, and I will unarm and ungird the loins of kings to open doors before him, so that gates will not be shut.
If God could use a heathen king to speak to His own people, He will surely use me to speak His word in today’s world.
2 I will go before you and level the mountains [to make the crooked places straight]; I will break in pieces the doors of bronze and cut asunder the bars of iron.
God’s intercessors are scarce and extremely precious to Him.
3 And I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, Who calls you by your name.
In the third verse notice that God promises you the treasures of darkness (in the heart of the person you’re praying for); there is hidden riches in that dark heart that only He knows exists, Through your prayer God will get glory and praise. That kind of prayer pleases Him very much.
John 1:5 And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
The Light in this verse is Jesus. The darkness is the realm of those who do not know Jesus. The word comprehend means to be without; I.e. the darkness cannot overcome the Light.
I often ask God to shine His glorious overwhelming Light into the darkness of places and people who need His awesome, pure and holy Light. Ask Him to shine His life-giving Light into your city, county and state government offices; your local school classrooms and administrative offices. Ask Him to shine His awesome Light into lawyers’ and politicians’ offices. Ask Him to shine brightly in abandoned buildings and places used by those involved in the dark arts. God’s Light is only limited by your lack of imagination, so stir up your spirit to ask Him to confront evil where ever it may be found. He knows all the hiding places. But you must be pure before expecting your prayers to bear fruit.