2024 Abide Fast Daily Devotionals

January 17 | Prayer, Not Pressure, Changes People

“But we all are changed by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 3:18 

Jesus asked the question, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?” (Matthew 7:3). We can hurt relationships when we expect more out of people than they’re able to give. Nobody appreciates being given the message, even subtly, that they must change in order to be loved or accepted. We’re more likely to change for those who are willing to accept us with our shortcomings, than for those who demand we live by their rules.

One thing’s for sure: God won’t change the people we’re trying to change until we adopt a hands-off policy. We must get out of His way and let Him work. Even when we think we’re hiding our disapproval, people still feel it. It’s in our voice and body language. Prayer is the great change agent, not pressure. If we truly love people, we’ll pray for them and allow God to work on them His way, on His schedule, and for His glory. Many of those who irritate us are simply being themselves; their personality just doesn’t mesh with ours. Sometimes we want them to change when we need to change. Often, the things we require in other people are already available for us to enjoy if we’ll just stop judging them. For change to be lasting, it must come from the inside out, and only the Spirit of God can bring that kind of change.

Consider: This is a very important message for the church at large. It is time to increase our prayers for others and lay down our lofty expectations of people. Who have you been judging? Repent today and ask for a new heart to love them. 

City Central Prayer Room Hours

Monday – Thursday: noon prayer (no MLK day)
Wednesday nights: 6:30 PM
All Day Prayer: Saturday Jan 27th, 8 AM to 8 PM

Join us to pray in our Prayer Room at City Central Church in Tacoma, WA.