Lenten Prayer Guide: Week 1

Father, Forgive Them

 

By Shu Yin Wong

Quebec Campus Director

 

Reflection 1: Ash Wednesday, February 17

Scripture: Luke 23:34

 

As we pray with this scripture let us look carefully at each word:

 

Father

Even as a 12-year-old boy, Jesus knows who he is among the knowledgeable teachers, authoritative leaders and his worried parents(Luke 2:48-49). He is from his Father. And he knows where he belongs –in his Father’s house. When we know our identity and where we belong in this world, we will see ourselves and others rightly, even when others don’t and wouldn’t understand.

 
Shu Yin, her husband, David, their children, Hayden and Alyson, and David’s parents, Mr. Chau and the late Mrs. Chau.
 

Forgive

‘Forgive’ in Greek can also mean ‘let be’. Perhaps Jesus is praying “Father, let them.”

 
 

Them

Who are these people? They are the people who dehumanize you, disrespect you, spit on you, yell at you, despise you, push you for no reason, dismiss you, devalue you, wrongly accuse you, speak over you, insult you, disqualify you, diminish you, don’t look at you, don’t speak to you, call you names, tease you about your appearance, spread rumours about your family, mock your culture and ethnic background, humiliate you in public, hit and poke you.

 
Illustration by Carolyn Tam, Campus Minister in Edmonton.
 

There is an old story: An old man takes great pains to rescue a scorpion, despite repeated stings. When questioned why he bothered to help something that would harm him, the man replied, “Simply because it is in the nature of the scorpion to sting, should I change my nature, which is to save?” 2

 

Reflection 2: Thursday, February 18

Scripture:Luke 10:21-22, Luke11:13

Ponder: Who is the Father? What is your view of the Father? Close your eyes and be still, ask “Father, where are you?” Wait for 2-4 minutes. Imagine what words and images may come to you.

 

Reflection 3: Friday, February 19

Scripture: Luke 18: 9-12

Ponder: It’s often said:“I cannot imagine someone would…” In another words, “God, I thank thee that I am not like they are.”But we MUST try hard to imagine that someone would… because when we don’t do so, we exalt ourselves higher than they. Whenever I receive and face unjust, unfair and undeserved assessments and treatment, I always remember there is no one on earth who has treated God more unjustly, unfairly and undeservingly than I. If God still forgives me and will continue to forgive me, why can’t I forgive others? I MUST, we MUST.

 
2 South Asia Bible Commentary, published 2015 by Open Door Publications, p.1383
Read all of InterVarsity’s 2021 Lenten Prayer Guide:

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