Our nation is in a state of chaos and confusion to the point that it is impossible to reconcile disputes and differences. At the root cause of all the hatred, violence, and division is sin. Sin has caused us to hurt each other, resulting in a never ending cycle of retribution and hate. Man-made efforts at reconciliation are limited at best. It is only through God that can we find true forgiveness and reconciliation – first, with God; and second, with each other.

2 Corinthians 5:16-21 says,

16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

As those who have received forgiveness and reconciliation from God, it is our charge to extend this message of hope and reconciliation with a hurting world. Let us pray that reconciliation would become a reality in the hearts and lives of our relatives, friends, neighbors, leaders, and government officials. Let us be proactive in seeking ways to be reconciled with others as well as allowing God to use us in restoring broken relationships.

LET US PRAY FOR…

FAMILIES

Heavenly Father, we lift up to you families that are hurting due to the pain caused by a family member. We pray that each husband and wife would build a Christ-centered marriage and family. We pray for children that have been negatively affected by their parents’ decisions, or who have had a parent leave, that you would give them the understanding to forgive them. In our own families, may we follow Paul’s instruction “…as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, [to] clothe [ourselves] with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. [Bearing] with each other and [forgiving] one another if [we have] a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave [me]. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity (Colossians 3:12-14)

RELATIONSHIPS

Lord, we bring you this petition to heal broken relationships. Restore friendships that were broken by misunderstanding. Let forgiveness reign in the hearts of people so they will not find it difficult to extend compassion and sympathy. Bring forth patience and understanding to let them see the viewpoint of others. May we all be “quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19).

OUR COUNTRY

Father in Heaven, we come to You with a heavy heart, confessing our faults and recognizing our helplessness. As Your people, called by Your name, we humble ourselves and pray and seek your face. As we turn from our own wicked ways, may you hear us from heaven, forgive us of our sins, and heal our land (2 Chronicles 7:14). Our country has been divided by so much hate and disagreements that only You can soften the hearts of people, so that anger will transform into compassion and ill-intent into peace. We pray that You would rule and reign over America and over every nation of the world.

OUR LEADERS

Sovereign God, we lift our leaders and government officials to You in prayer. Enlighten their minds to make wise decisions. Create opportunities for them to receive Godly counsel. Soften their hearts that they may find ways to work with one another. We pray for pastors everywhere that you would give them Godly wisdom as they lead their flock and proclaim this message of hope and reconciliation. May the God of peace “fill [them] with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives” (Colossians 1:9).

MYSELF

Investigate my life, O God,
    find out everything about me;
Cross-examine and test me,
    get a clear picture of what I’m about;
See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong—
    then guide me on the road to eternal life.

(Psalm 139:23-24 The Message)

Dear Lord, may forgiveness and reconciliation begin with me. Open my eyes to relationships in my own life that need restoration. Open up opportunities for me to be used by You to minister reconciliation to others.

I ask all this in Jesus’ name. Amen.