(For a printable version of this exercise,
click here. Then in your internet browser,
go to "File," then "Print.")
A Way To Listen to Every Negative
(Note that the way to pray about the emotions once you
identify them will become clearer as you read the rest of
the book chapters).
It is of utmost importance that you actually act in applying
the blood of Jesus every time you judge, or you will have
no change in your life.
You will have the most success in walking out your healing if you
have a practical routine to use. Otherwise it is easy to slip back
into your old pattern of not listening to your emotions.
I suggest that you make it a practice to listen to every negative
emotion, and I have created an assignment that you can do daily.
The following are common questions people have
expressed about their healing walk:
• How can I truly make peace with myself and come to
• How can I hear the voice of God so He can lead me in
• How can I take down the wall inside me?
• This healing thing is so complicated. How can I
possibly get it right?
• How can I keep from losing the healing I have already
• How can I know that the Lord has healed a bitter root?
• How do I know when there is a deeper root behind what
just happened that triggered me?
• How can I know when I should be done praying?
• How can I possibly "count it all joy when I encounter
Listening to every negative emotion is a very powerful practice
that can provide the answers to these questions and peace for the
anxiety that results when emotions are stirred up.
Your negative emotions are a powerful tool that the Lord can use
to direct your healing. He is in charge of your healing, truly wants
you healed, and knows the path you need to follow to get healed.
Therefore He puts you into situations that are divinely ordained to
bring up the next issue He wants to work on. He will tell you about
it by the negative feeling that comes up. It is like a dentist poking
around in your mouth. When he touches a sore spot, you know it.
Therefore, your negative emotions are a powerful way that the
Lord can lead you, all day every day. Therefore, you can "count it
all joy," because the pain is going to lead to healing.
Keep a pad of paper with you to write down every incident of a
negative emotion, no matter how small. It can be a short note or a
long journal. It is your choice.
A major purpose of keeping a written list is so that if at the end of
the day your paper is blank, you will know you haven't been
listening. We all judge (and therefore have a negative emotion)
many times every day. It is very easy to fall back into the old
pattern of not listening if we aren't careful.
Pray over each item on your list
Be diligent to set aside time to get quiet and comfortable where
there is a minimum of distractions. Look at each item on the list.
Close your eyes and remember the recent incident that triggered
the negative emotion.
• Choose a feeling word to describe the feeling. Most negative
emotions are signals that you have judged. If you need help
naming the emotion, see the attached list of emotions.
• Forgive whomever/whatever you have judged.
• If your Treasure Inside is the one you have judged, ask
him/her to forgive you.
Ask the Lord to forgive you for the judgment,
• To remove the bitter root
• To cleanse that place with His blood
• To fill that place with His spirit.
For some suggestions on forgiving, scroll down to the end of this
After you pray
Review the incident and see if there is peace. If there is peace, you
are done. If not, there is more praying to be done. The further
praying may have to do with the current event, or there may be an
older, deeper root to be prayed about.
• When you have peace, you are done. Peace means that
the work the Lord wanted you to do right now is done. It does
not necessarily mean that every bitter root with respect to
that person or type of situation is gone. If there is more, in
due season the Lord will bring it up.
• Once you have prayed and have peace, then just go on
and enjoy the day.
Continue Paying Attention
If on any given day you have an almost blank piece of paper, this
always means you haven't been listening. We all judge many
times a day.
Making Friends With Yourself
If you have a history of judging yourself, once you begin to listen
you may be astonished at how awful you are to yourself.
A key to healing is to make friends with your Treasure Inside. This
friendship, built on a growing trust, comes about by listening every
time your Treasure Inside sends up a negative feeling, It is a bit
like a parent with a child. If the child cries, a good parent will ask
the child what is wrong, with the idea of correcting whatever is the
problem. When a parent does this consistently, the child grows to
trust the parent, knowing the parent has their best interest at heart.
Positive Emotions Can Also Be Important
Also listen to your positive emotions, because they are also
directional. They point you towards things that are good for you.
It is not selfish to listen to your positive emotions. Of course, no
prayer is necessary, because they are not pointing out sin. Just
What about the common questions posed at the beginning of this
article? By letting the Lord lead you through your negative
emotions, and forgiving and being forgiven (applying the blood of
Jesus), you will find all these questions being answered.
You can't do it, but Jesus can - and wants to! Through this
process you will be changed into the image of Jesus, step by step.
List of Negative Emotions
Anger (When you feel anger, you need to go deeper. Look below the anger,
and you will find another emotion that is being expressed as anger. It is
important to find the underlying emotion, because it is a clue as to what went
wrong when you judged; and therefore helps you to know how to pray).
List of Other Negative Emotions
List of Positive Emotions
Details of How to Forgive
If you are not yet convinced that forgiving is the only way to enter
into the rest provided by Christ, then again read Chapters 2, 3, 4,
and 5 in “I Will Give You Rest.”
The Power Behind Forgiveness
When we judge, we have responded to our God-wannabe
(“flesh”). We have then invited darkness into a place in us. When
we forgive, we are getting off the throne as the judge; and we are
inviting Jesus into that place. Jesus then comes in, as He has
promised. He has the ability to come in and overwhelm the work
that the Devil had done in us, because Jesus is more powerful
than the Devil (1 John 4:4). If He were not more powerful, then we
would be wasting our breath.
Once you are convinced, that forgiving and being forgiven by
Jesus is so important, then the next important question is, “How
do I do it?”
Forgive From The Heart
The key is that forgiving must come from the heart. It must be real.
Because of this, reciting a rote prayer can be a mistake. We may
come to rely on the words said and not on the heart change
required. This is a real temptation, because reciting words is much
easier than truly letting go of the resentment.
At the same time, it is sometimes helpful in the beginning to have
some guidance of what to say. Therefore I somewhat reluctantly
am providing several sample prayers. From the variety of samples,
you can see that there is no magical set of words to speak,
although we do need to actually speak words to accomplish
forgiveness (though if others are present, sometimes it would be
most appropriate to say it under your breath).
One way to keep from getting into the rut of a rote prayer is to use
a different sample prayer each time. That way you may not get
hooked on the exact words, but will begin to grasp the principles
involved. Know that the goal is for you to be weaned from all
sample prayers, and to just speak to the Lord spontaneously.
One way to keep focused on the principles and not specific words
is to keep in mind what forgiveness is, and why we need it.
The basic truth behind forgiving is that when we judge, we have
taken Jesus’ place on the throne as the judge. We are never
authorized to judge anyone or anything, even if they are in fact
guilty. This judging is sin; and to get free from the consequences
of this sin, we need to forgive so that we will be forgiven.
When we forgive, we are stepping down off the throne, and are
inviting Jesus to take that place. We are asking Jesus to take out
the bitter root we just planted in our “honeycomb” (Chapter 3), and
to fill that place with His presence. In this way, since Jesus now
resides there, we are actually changed into the image of Jesus in
that place in us. If you are unclear about this, reread Chapters 4
When we forgive and are forgiven by God, the spiritual work has
been done. However, if in judging we have done something to
damage our relationship with the one we judged, we also need to
repair that breach by approaching that one, repenting and asking
them to forgive us.
Who Do We Judge?
Those that we judge include:
• Other people
• Things (inanimate objects)
Forgiving Other People and Things
People are capable of sinning, so praying to forgive them makes
sense to us. Even though “things” are not actually capable of
sinning, I find it easy to recognize that I do frequently accuse them
of doing so. Consequently it doesn’t seem particularly strange for
me to forgive my computer for being too slow, or my car for not
Sample Prayers for Forgiving Others and Things
Note that in each case I would speak directly to the other
person/thing, using the second person "you," as though he/she/it
was present. This makes it more personal, and brings the event
back to my mind. Generally I will not actually go to the one I
judged and speak these words to them. The problem isn't in them,
it is inside me.
A prayer regarding your Dad might go something like this:
"Father God, I come to You in the blessed name of Jesus.
I realize that I have judged my Dad, and I have inside me a root of
I am sorry that I did this, and I don't want that awful thing in me
Dad, I forgive you for ____________ (the offense).
Lord, I ask You to forgive me for this judgment of bitterness.
Forgive me for taking Your place as the judge.
I ask You to come into that place in me, remove that ugly root from
me and wash me clean with Your blood.
Cleanse me in every place where that bitterness existed.
I ask You to fill all those places with Your presence.
Lord, I ask that You would bless my Dad. Amen."
A prayer regarding Mom might go something like this:
“Mom, I forgive you for _____________. You owe me nothing – no
restitution, no apologies, no explanation, no reasons, no excuses.
I release you totally. I accept Jesus, as the restitution for your sin
Father, Your Word says, that If we confess our sins, we can trust
you to be merciful and just and forgive us of all unrighteousness. I
have now confessed my sin, and know that You have forgiven me.
As far as the east is from the west, you have put my sin from me
and You remember it no more.”
For example, a man cuts me off in traffic. I feel anger spring up in
me. I honk my horn and utter some words. Then I would catch
myself and say something like:
"Lord, I have just judged that man." I would name the feeling
behind the anger, in this case perhaps "demeaned", or "belittled."
"Mister, I forgive you for pulling out in front of me, for treating me
as being of less importance than you, for ignoring my safety.
Lord, forgive me for judging that man, for taking Your place on the
throne as the judge.
I ask You to reach down inside me and remove that bitter root I just
Wash that place clean with Your blood, and then please fill that
place with Your Holy Spirit.
Lord, bless that man's day, and keep him safe.
I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen."
This is an example based upon the Elements Involved in Forgiving
on Page 69 of “I Will Give You Rest.”
Example: I discover that my wife (Kay) has failed to do the laundry
(we have agreed on who does which home chores, and this is one
of hers), and I have no clean socks. I am angry at her, and say to
myself: “There, she did it again!”
I have just planted a root of bitterness in myself, and I need the
Lord to remove it.
Recognition: “I have just judged Kay for not having done the
Confession: “I sinned when I judged her.”
Repentance: “I am unhappy that I did this, and want that bitter root
Forgiveness: “Kay, I forgive you for not doing the laundry, and
leaving me without any clean socks.”
Accept Forgiveness: “Lord, forgive me for judging Kay. Take out
that bitter root I just planted. Cleanse that place with your blood.”
Ask the Lord to Fill me: “Lord, I invite you to come into that place
where the bitter root had been; and fill it with your Spirit.”
Bless the other: “Lord, I ask that you would bless her in her busy
Restoring the relationship (Restitution): In this example, my wife
was not present when I discovered that I had no clean socks.
If she had been present, and if I had spoken those angry words to
her or otherwise acted angrily towards her, I would then need to
restore our relationship. I would confess my sin against her, tell
her how sorry I am that I hurt her, and ask her to forgive me for
judging her, and wounding her. I might then agree to do
something for her, like doing the laundry next week as a way of
showing her that I really was sorry.
This is not legalism or “penance,” because my agreeing to do the
laundry is to restore my relationship with her, not as a way to wash
away my sin. That had already been taken care of by the blood of
God is incapable of sinning. Intuitively we know this, so to say to
God “I forgive You” somehow feels not genuine. At the same time,
we have in fact sinned by judging Him; and to remove that sin, we
need to forgive so we can be forgiven. We also need to restore the
Using different words that parallel the meaning of “forgive” should
remove this awkwardness. For example:
“God, I wrongly judged You as (name the judgment)___ . My
God wannabe (“flesh”) lied to me about You. I release You from
the debt I charged against You. I know that You did not (name
the judgment). Lord, I ask that You release me from the debt
that I owe for having taken Your place as the judge of You. I ask
You to take out the bitter root, and wash me clean with Your blood.
Please come into that place, filling that place in me with Your Holy
Lord, I am so sorry that I judged You. Please forgive me.”
Judging ourselves is very common, and very destructive to
us. Forgiving ourselves is more complex than forgiving God,
because our “flesh” (God-wannabe, Chapter 13) is capable of
sinning; and yet our Treasure Inside (Chapters 9 and 12) is made
in God’s image, and therefore does not sin.
Whenever we judge ourselves, we always condemn both our God-
wannabe and our Treasure Inside. Therefore, not only is this
judging a sin, it is an affront to our Treasure Inside.
Here we bump into the same awkwardness as when we forgive
God. To say to our Treasure Inside “I forgive you” somehow feels
not genuine. Intuitively we know he or she did not sin.
As with forgiving God, using different words that parallel the
meaning of “forgive” should remove this awkwardness. And of
course, we want to restore our relationship with our Treasure
Inside. For example, focus inside and speak to your Treasure
“ (your name) , I wrongly judged you as being (the
judgment) . My God wannabe lied to me about you. I release
you from the debt I charged against you. I know that you are not
_____(the judgment) . I am so sorry that I judged you. Lord,
I ask that You release me from the debt that I owe for having taken
Your place as the judge of myself. I ask You to take out the bitter
root, and wash me clean with Your blood. Please come into that
place, filling it with Your Holy Spirit.”
_____(your name) , please forgive me. I want to be your
friend, not your judge.”
Copyright 2003 Edward Kurath
Being changed into the image of Jesus
Out of control
Out of place