Praying James 2
Just like the rest of the book, James holds nothing back as he writes about favoritism and mercy in James 2.
When we start to get puffed up and prideful, James causes us to step back and re-evaluate our hearts. He constantly helps us keep our focus on Jesus and reminds us that we are servants of Jesus who have received an immense amount of mercy.
James calls our hearts to show this same mercy to others. He urges Christians to not make it harder for them than it was for us. If we do, he warns us the tables will be flipped and we will be judged much more harshly.
Let’s dig into the first part of James chapter 2 together and let God’s words soak into our hearts so our actions will glorify Him and bring others to Him!
Lord, you look at our hearts and not our outward appearance. We pray that we would not play favorites but instead see all people as your amazing creation! You love each person walking this earth whether they know you yet or not. You do not want to lose anyone but want everyone to come to know salvation through your son, Jesus Christ.
Give us your heart for your people so that we may feel the same. Let us be passionate about reaching out to all people and not just those who make us feel comfortable.
Oh, how you made people uncomfortable as you walked this earth! You called everyone to you. You did not play favorites. Let us openly share your love with everyone, too, no matter their age, race, socioeconomic status, etc. Let us see people through your eyes! And let them feel your love through us!
Lord, we love how you never beat around the bush with us. We don’t have to guess where we stand with you or if our hearts are in line with yours. You tell us like it is. Your word and the Holy Spirit prick our hearts when we wander from your ways and it’s up to us to listen or not.
May we keep this James passage in our hearts, so we don’t “discriminate among [ourselves] and become judges with evil thoughts.”
As we reach out to others in your name, help us to not be choosy. You do not judge people by their looks and you ask us to not fall into that trap either. You call us not to play favorites.
We pray that we will see each person as your amazing creation. Help us love them in a way that reflects your heart for them. May each person we encounter leave our presence knowing we really care for them. Let them be seen by us even if they don’t feel they are seen by anyone else. In our seeing them and loving them, let them feel your love.
In the One who died for everyone – Amen!
Lord, we know we can only serve one God! Help us to not worship anything other than you. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in titles, money, or ourselves that we leave you out. Wake us up!
Help us see that our truest wealth is in our faith which lasts eternally. In the One who gave us hope and forgiveness when we couldn’t achieve this for ourselves – Amen!
Oh, Lord, we often fall into determining someone’s value based on their wealth. Their wealth tells us nothing of their heart or their love for you. Help us not to insult the poor and elevate the rich.
We pray that you will help us reach out to others without selfish motives like James addresses here. Help us not to disregard those in humble circumstances in order to try and elevate ourselves with those who show their disdain for you and treat others badly.
You have called us to honor you with whatever you have blessed us with, and at the same time you call us not to play favorites. Help us to have humble hearts, to follow your example of loving all and not judging a person by their economic status or what they can do for us. In the One who is the richest of all and yet humbled himself on the cross for our sake – Amen!
Lord, you boiled down the entirety of the law into an easy to remember statement:
Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, and soul, and love your neighbor as yourself.
It’s easy to remember but sometimes so difficult to put into action. However, you provide us with your Spirit so we can do this. Help us focus on trying to use your power and not our own.
In the One who is our strength – Amen!
There is such beauty in the diversity you’ve created. You’ve created each of us with different talents and different backgrounds which bring about different understanding and perspectives.
Then, instead of encouraging people to split up into their own groups, you created the body of Christ to be a community that brings all these different people together. We have differences but Christ brings us together. Praise you, Lord, for providing a place of unity and grace!
Oh, Lord, let us not create division where you have created unity. Let us not look down on someone just because they are different from us mentally, physically, or emotionally, because spiritually you have made us one. There is one Lord, one faith, and one baptism. It is in Him we have our hope. Let the sin of favoritism be far from our hearts. In Jesus’ holy name – Amen!
Oh, Lord! We screw up all the time. If it’s not showing favoritism, it’s something else…lying to keep from hurting someone’s feelings, delighting in things you would condemn, gossiping instead of giving grace and love, etc…
Oh, Lord, we praise you for Jesus because without Him we would be lost. The law cannot save us. The law is your beautiful word that shows us your righteousness and how unrighteous we are. It shows us our complete and utter need for you.
We pray that as we confess and bring our hearts before you, you will help us see through our prideful eyes where sin still exists in our lives. Yes, with your help we have conquered certain sins but others may still be lurking.
May we never get so prideful that we stop seeing sin in our lives while gleefully pointing it out in others. May we allow the Holy Spirit to convict us so we can honor you and be used for your glory. In the One who was completely sinless and yet took on all our sins – Amen!
Your amazing law gives us such freedom. Along with that freedom came mercy and saving grace! We praise you, Lord, for the mercy you’ve had on us when justice demanded our sins to be paid. Instead of making us pay, you took them all on yourself.
May we show mercy to others so that we will show our thankfulness to you for your mercy toward us. In Jesus’ holy name – Amen!
Lord, it’s only through your mercy that we have forgiveness. Praise you and the plan you made to pour mercy out on our souls.
Satan cannot stand when your mercy is accepted and given freely. His plans are destroyed and souls are freed.
Your mercy triumphs over judgement!
In the One who took all our sins on himself so we would not be condemned – Amen!