Jesus said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27)
If we are honest, we know that we all hold some prejudice against someone. Maybe it’s racial. Maybe it’s political. Maybe it’s socio-economic, or cultural, or even age-related or influenced by some difference that angers us or, more likely, makes us afraid. If you think you don’t harbor any prejudice at all, think a little harder. Have you ever referred to anyone as one of “those people?” Do you harbor a secret theory that the drivers of certain cars are jerks, or that people who fervently support a certain cause or lifestyle are unpleasant? Who makes you angry? Who makes you uncomfortable? This week, ask God to show you your secret prejudices, the ones you may even have hidden from yourself.
Then, when you have identified the person or people you have negative feelings about, pray for them. Put them right at the top of your prayer list. Ask God to bless them. Ask God to open your eyes so you can see them as Jesus does. Take a real risk and ask God to bring one single person who puts a face on your prejudice into your life so you can pray for them specifically and get to know them as a fellow child of God.
C.S. Lewis said, ““I pray because I can’t help myself. I pray because I’m helpless. I pray because the need flows out of me all the time—waking and sleeping. It doesn’t change God—it changes me.” When we pray for the people we struggle to love, God changes our heart. God helps us to see our neighbors the way God sees them, as special and worthy of love and grace.
—Jennifer Creagar, Resurrection Prayer Ministry