Loving Those Who Hate You: Powerful Prayers of Love and Forgiveness

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? – Matthew 5: 43-47


February 14th is universally recognized as St. Valentine’s Day. It is a day people exchange flowers and gifts and discuss the power of love?

  • Should we celebrate Valentine’s Day or should we not?
  • If we should, what are the best ways to celebrate the day?
  • What should be achieved and avoided during Valentine’s Day?

Okay, I’ll leave you to answer those questions.

This post is not really about St. Valentine and Valentine’s Day. Yes, it’s about love, but not about the February 14th day love talks and discussions.


How Do You Give Love When You Got Hate?

Some four weeks ago, I had a very big crisis that affected my health, and almost put our ministry at risk of humiliation. I found out that some persons I trusted so much had been taking advantage of my trust and working against me and the ministry in my absence.  It was the biggest shock of my life. I couldn’t believe what was happening.  It was hard considering that the persons involved were my most trusted allies and co-labourers. I felt betrayed and was devastated at what came to my knowledge.

Being betrayed is one of the worse things that can happen to anyone. The discovery comes with countless feelings of disappointment, sorrow, and sometimes even depression. And if care is not taken, it can become a ground for the devil to unleash even more deadly venoms.

I should say that, as at this time, I am still fighting off all manner of negative emotions. I am waging war against the feelings of vengeance, sadness, sorrow and apathy.

This is the reason for this post…

  • How do you give love when you were given hate?
  • How do you love those who betrayed you?
  • How do you love a spouse who cheated on you multiple times and disrespected your marriage vows?
  • How do you love business partners who deceived you and took advantage of your humbleness for their personal gains?
  • How do you love friends who slept with your spouse?
  • How do you love brothers who sold you into slavery?

As a preacher, I can tell you that I preach love and forgiveness, and many times it sounds very sweet in my mouth. But with what happened to me recently, that message is not sounding sweet in my mouth any more.

Now I know that there are real pains when people talk about betrayals.

Now I know that there are times that forgiveness is not easy. Even when you forgive, the different pictures of the negative events may continue to replay in your subconscious mind.

How do you find personal healing from hurts and give love and forgiveness where you got hate?


Acknowledge Your Suffering

This is the first lesson I am re-learning now. I thought I was a very strong-minded fellow that things don’t easily affect. Not until the situation involved the closest persons in my life. Now I know that inner pains and hurts and real. People are suffering serious pains from hurts from the people they loved and trusted. It is not something to toss off and say, “Sister, forgive. Just move on.”

Yes, I want to move on, but how.

The first lesson that God is teaching me is to acknowledge my pains. Jesus said, come to me all you that labour and heavy laden, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28).

Don’t try to hide your pains. Tell God you are suffering and that you need Him to help you and give you rest.

Fasting is great, but I doubt that’s what you need when you are feeling very hurt. I know because the first thing I did when the situation came to surface was to embark on a three-day fast to read scriptures and pray, but after that, I found out that I didn’t get better. It seemed that I got worse because more revelations of big cover-ups came to light.

Don’t try to hide the pains you feel with some sweet, motivating, positive confessions. Come to God as you are and tell Him how you feel. Be real with Him.


Ask God for Grace and Power to Forgive

Today, I can relate to the story of Joseph. Now I understand the depth of the pains he suffered when his own brothers betrayed him and sold him into slavery. I tell that story a lot but I think I now fully appreciate the emotional trauma and suffering the young man went through. Thankfully, he forgave his brothers when the opportunity presented itself. God gave Him the grace to forgive.

Forgiving people who deliberately and insistently hurt you is very difficult, especially if these people were close to you and you trusted them. There will be countless times you’ll feel vengeful. You’ll want to prove that you’re not a fool. But God’s Word restrains us from taking vengeance. And not just that, the Word also asks us to forgive.

One prayer I’ve added to my daily prayer points is this:

O Lord, I want to love like You. Help me to love and forgive as You did.

Continue to ask God for grace to forgive and love. Tell Him that You are finding it difficult, but You are willing to stick with His Word.

I continue to pray like this…

Lord, my feelings are telling me to revenge. My feelings are telling me to fight back. And yes, Lord, I really want to fight back. I do feel I should not just take all this rubbish.

But Lord, I want to obey Your Word.

 I know that my feelings can be wrong, but Your Word is always right. Therefore, Lord, help me to forgive and love. I don’t know how it will be done, but I am trusting You to help me, in Jesus name. Amen.


Believe that Something Good Will Come Out In the End

I believe that Joseph could not fathom how slavery and imprisonment were part of the process of fulfilling the vision of greatness God gave him. But in God’s agenda, the entire trial, although carried out by satan, ended up bringing God’s plan to pass.

God always uses Satan’s so-called smartness and attacks to establish His glory and bring about His promises. So yes, something good will come out of whatever negative situation we have found ourselves.

Yes, we may know how it will happen. We may not see where everything is taking us to. We may not even understand the whole mess.  We may feel very confused, feel like taking a break from our faith. We may be counting our losses and shame. But one thing is certain: something good will come out of the situation. That is what the Word of God says, so we will continue to remind ourselves of the promise.


Don’t Blame Yourself Too Much

Until today I’m still asking myself, how could I be so stupid? Why didn’t I suspect this kind of thing at all?

But one thing I perceive God telling me is, “Don’t blame yourself too much for another person’s wickedness.”

The people who hurt others will often attempt to put the blame on their victims. For instance, a cheating spouse will say things like, “you were not there when I needed you.” A stealing business partner will say, “I needed money to complete my rent. You did not support me when I asked for your help.”

But learn to never blame yourself for another person’s foolishness. We are all responsible for our actions. Instead of blaming yourself too much, ask God to teach you deep truths about the hearts of humans.


Give Yourself Time to Heal

If I forgive, will the hurt I feel go away?

No, not immediately.

But forgiveness has nothing to do with feelings. Forgiveness is a decision. Forgetting is a process. If we decide not to forgive, the hurt is like an open, festering wound, which is very difficult to heal. When we make the decision to forgive, the hurt is cleaned up, and the healing process is then quick.

I know you chose love and forgiveness. That’s great. That’s God’s command to us and the gift we must give to others. But expect that the pains caused you will take some time to heal up.

That you still feel some pains does not mean something is wrong with you. Continue to cry out to God from your heart for healing. It may take some time, but certainly, you’ll be healed and strengthened. And you’ll become better and better.


Ask for Counsel, But Don’t Follow Every Advise

Yes, the Bible says that in the multitude of counsels there is safety (Proverbs 11:14). And you should speak to people who can counsel you. But beware of the final advice you chose to follow. Why?

In my case, for example, I have cried out to numerous counsellors and experts, and have received different kinds of suggestions of what to do. And these suggestions seem like the perfect thing to do in all the books. But as I pray and listen to my heart, I sense that what these experts are saying is not what I should do. I see in my spirit God asking me to follow a different direction.

Sometimes, the spirit of lies and deception can use experts to get to us. Not because they do not know what they are saying, but because at the particular time, their counsel is not the will of God for the situation at hand. You’ll need a lot of humility and patience to see through the Holy Spirit what should be done. But the Holy Spirit will counsel you for certain.


Challenge

Today, I am challenging us to accept God’s gift of love and extend it to those who may have hurt us in one way or the other. It is not going to be easy, but we can pray that God’s Spirit will shed the love of God in our hearts. Pray the following prayers…


Prayer Points

Heavenly Father, I ask You for grace to walk in love and forgiveness all the days of my life. Help me to love like you and to forgive like you.

While I know that this may not be easy for me, Lord, I acknowledge the fact that it is possible, in Jesus name.


I pray today, O Lord, remind me if there is anyone I need to forgive in my past and move on, and also help me to forgive anyone who offends me in the future, in the name of Jesus Christ.


Father, forgive me for all the times I surrendered my mind to evil thoughts and my tongue to evil declarations. Forgive me for all the times I tried to seek revenge in my own ways.

Forgive me, Lord, for all the times I lied, gossiped, and rehearsed ceaselessly in my mind what was said or done to me, in Jesus name.


Today, Lord, I declare that I chose love and forgiveness. Holy Spirit, help me to be a medium through which God’s kind of love and forgiveness is seen in the world, in my home and in my community, in Jesus name.


O Lord, help me to be more patient with my spouse, with my children, and with others. Help me to be more tolerant, and help me to be more kind, even in the midst of hatred, in Jesus name.


Holy Spirit, help all of me to forgive people who have hurt me, and heal my emotions that have been wounded.

Teach me, Lord, how to love unconditionally, and remind me every day to use Your power on the inside of me to draw on Your help, comfort and peace at all times.

Help me to forget the past so that I can move forward to the future as I press toward the mark of my higher calling in Christ Jesus.


O Lord, I ask for forgiveness of all the damaging and hurtful words I have spoken about myself in the past. I do not want to continue to abuse, deride and debase myself in such a way again. Renew my thoughts and help me to understand and appreciate that You have made me in Your image and likeness.

Empower my attitudes and habits henceforth, so that I use my tongue to speak faith, hope, love and favour upon my life, even in the midst of tribulations, in Jesus name.


Today, I speak to the root of anger, bitterness, and unforgiveness in my spirit to be destroyed, in Jesus name.

Father, restore to me whatever has been damaged in my life and family as a result of bitterness, anger, and unforgiveness in the past, in Jesus name.


Heal me O Lord, and I shall be healed. Restore me O Lord, and I shall be restored. Empower me LORD, and I shall be empowered, in Jesus name.


O Lord, help me to love even my enemies and give me the grace to help them when they are in need, in Jesus name.


Father, through your love, You gave us your Son, who died for us, even while we were still sinners. O Lord, grant me the spirit of giving, cause me to be a giver at all times, in Jesus name.


21 Days Fasting and Prayers Book for the Year

Prophetic Declaration and Breakthrough Prayers For 2020: I Will Arise and Shine by [Okpara, Daniel C.]

In the month of January, we did our usual 21 days fasting and prayers. Were you able to get my book, I WILL ARISE, and do the payers?

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My Recent Books

1. 31 Days in the School of Faith: A Daily Meditations & Prophetic Declarations to Empower Your Faith and Release Your Breakthrough

2. 31 Days With the Holy Spirit: A Daily Meditations and Prayers to Learn More of the Holy Spirit, Connect More With Him, and Manifest His Presence and Gifts

3. 31 Days With The Heroes Of Faith: A Daily Meditations, Prayers & Declarations From Hebrews Chapter Eleven | Re-fire Your Faith, & Experience Breakthrough

4. 31 Days in the Parables: A Daily Instructions and Prayers from the Parables of Christ to Develop Deeper Spiritual Awareness, and Command Supernatural Help


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Jesus Christ is the LORD.


 

My Latest Audiobooks 

Deliverance by Fire: 21 Days of Intensive Word Immersion, and Fire Prayers for Total Healing, Deliverance, Breakthrough, and Divine Intervention audiobook cover art

Deliverance by Fire: 21 Days of Intensive Word Immersion, and Fire Prayers for Total Healing, Deliverance, Breakthrough, and Divine Intervention.

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All Audio Books Now Available

To See all my Over 20 Audiobooks now available, Click Here.  Below are some of them specifically. I am sure that these books will bless you.

  1. 120 Powerful Night Prayers that Will Change Your Life
  2. 28 Days of Praise Challenge: Dealing With Your Fears and Battles Through Intentional Praise
  3. Anger Management God’s Way: Bible Ways to Control Your Emotions, Get Healed of Hurts & Respond to Offenses …Plus Powerful Daily Prayers to Overcome Bad Anger Permanently
  4. By His Stripes: God’s Promises & Prayers for Healing
  5. Deliverance of the mind: Powerful Prayers to Deal With Mind Control, Fear, Anxiety, Depression, Anger and Other Negative Emotions.
  6. Healing Words: Daily Confessions & Declarations to Activate Your Healing
  7. How God Speaks to You: An ABC Guide to Hearing the Voice of God & Following His Direction for Your Life
  8. How to Exercise Authority Over Sickness: Authoritative Prayers and Declarations for Personal Healing, and Healing of Your Loved Ones
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  12. Take it By Force: 200 Violent Prayers for Deliverance, Healing and Financial Breakthrough
  13. Under His Shadow: God’s Promises and Prayers for Protection
  14. When God Is Silent: What to Do When Prayers Seems Unanswered or Delayed
  15. Beside the Still Waters: God’s Promises and Prayers for Guidance and Direction | Learn to Know the Will of God & Make Right Decisions
  16. Less Panic More Hope: God’s Promises and Prayers to Overcome Fear, Anxiety, and Depression – Scriptures and Prayers for Mental Health
  17. How to Pray for Your Family: Plus Over 70 Prayers for Your Family’s Salvation, Healing, Restoration, and Breakthrough
  18. Prayers that Break Curses: Everything You Need to Know About Curses, and Powerful Prayers to Stop All Kinds of Curses
  19. 20 Commonly Asked Questions About Demons: Answers You Need to Bind and Cast Out Demons, Heal the Sick, and Experience Breakthrough
  20. Deliverance by Fire: 21 Days of Intensive Word Immersion, and Fire Prayers for Total Healing, Deliverance, Breakthrough, and Divine Intervention.
  21. Command Your Money: Powerful Keys to Provoke Financial Breakthrough | 10 Simple Actions of Faith That Will Provoke Financial Breakthrough for Anyone in 30 Days or Less

Our Latest Books…

These Books Will Change Your Life for Good.

23. 31 Days in the School of Faith: A Daily Meditations & Prophetic Declarations to Empower Your Faith and Release Your Breakthrough

22. 31 Days With the Holy Spirit: A Daily Meditations and Prayers to Learn More of the Holy Spirit, Connect More With Him, and Manifest His Presence and Gifts

21. 31 Days With The Heroes Of Faith: A Daily Meditations, Prayers & Declarations From Hebrews Chapter Eleven | Re-fire Your Faith, & Experience Breakthrough

20. 31 Days in the Parables: A Daily Instructions and Prayers from the Parables of Christ to Develop Deeper Spiritual Awareness, and Command Supernatural Help

19.  Give Orders to the Day: Daily Meditations and Prophetic Declarations for All Round Victory, Protection, Healing, and Breakthrough

18. Command Your Money: 10 Simple Actions of Faith That Will Provoke Financial Breakthrough for Anyone

17. 31 Days With Jesus: 5 Minutes Daily Meditations and Prayers to Learn More of Jesus, Connect More With Him, and Be More Like Him

16. DELIVERANCE BY FIRE – 21 Days of Intensive Word Immersion, and Fire Prayers for Total Healing, Deliverance, Breakthrough, and Divine Intervention

15. Beside the Still Waters: God’s Promises and Prayers for Guidance and Direction | Learn to Know the Will of God & Make Right Decisions

14. Under His Shadow: God’s Promises and Prayers for Protection

13. Less Panic, More Hope: God’s Promises and Prayers to Overcome Fear, Anxiety, and Depression – Scriptures and Prayers for Mental Health.

1228 Days of Praise ChallengeDeal With Your Anxieties, Pains & Battles, and Release Answers to Your Prayers

11. Prophetic Declaration and Breakthrough Prayers: Pursue, Overtake, Recover All: 21 Days Fasting Guide, Prayers, and Prophetic Declarations for All-round Victory, Restoration, and Breakthrough in 2018.

10. Praise Warfare: A 5-Day Praise Your Way to Victory and Breakthrough Devotional – Overcoming Your Fears, Worries & Battles With the Power of Praise.

9. Deliverance of the Mind: Powerful Prayers to Deal With Mind Control, Fear, Anxiety, Depression, Anger and Other Negative Emotions | Gain Clarity & Peace of Mind & Manifest the Blessings of God

8.  20 Commonly Asked Questions About Demons – Answers You Need to Bind and Cast Out Demons, Heal the Sick, and Experience Breakthrough

7. How God Speaks to You: An ABC Guide to Hearing the Voice of God & Following His Direction for Your Life. Learn over 7 different ways that God is speaking to you with real-life case studies and exercises to get you to hear the voice of God in your daily life.

6. Anger Management God’s Way – Bible Ways to Controlling Your Emotions, Healing Your Hurts and Responding to Offenses.

5. When God Is Silent: What to Do When Prayers Seems Unanswered or Delayed.

4.  I SHALL NOT DIE.  – Prayers to Overcome the Spirit and Fear of Death.

3. How to Exercise Authority Over Sickness

2. By His Stripes: God’s Promises and Prayers for Healing

1. Strive! Make Things Happen: 40 Things I Learned in 40 Years

Daniel C. Okpara is the author of numerous best-selling books, including, What Do You Have in Your House?, Parable of the Serpent, Pillars of Excellence in Life and Business, Take it By Force, Prayer Wave, and Many others. He is the founder of Better Life World Outreach Center, a non-denominational ministry dedicated to global evangelism and equipping of God's people to live a better life. He is also the founder of Breakthrough Prayers Foundation www.breakthroughprayers.org), an online portal leading people all over the world to encounter God and change their lives through prayer. He has authored over 50 books on business, prayer, relationship, and investment.

4 Comments
  1. Reply
    Jude February 13, 2020 at 2:26 pm

    What a powerful, honest, timely & helpful post. Thank-you

  2. Reply
    Billie Jean Bryan February 13, 2020 at 6:04 pm

    The timing for this message is just right. Too much going on all around us. If I do something hurtful, I dont want to be persecuted. So I’m going to work hard on forgiveness. We need to be living this day to day, rest of our lives.

  3. Reply
    Zahrah McFadgen February 14, 2020 at 12:27 am

    Praise God for this message! I so needed this because I’ve been wrestling with negative feelings too as a result of the constant hate being directed towards me. I want to truly love and forgive like Jesus and keep choosing forgiveness but my emotional turmoil causes me to doubt if I really have forgiven. Thank you so much for your humility, honesty and transparency. It helped more than you can know! God bless you and your family.

  4. Reply
    Petronella Pule May 5, 2020 at 7:45 am

    Touch by the message and pray for grace of God to help me forgive though i feel i need more time

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