You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48)
Jesus Called Us To A Higher Relationship
Having a friend is a special part of life. They are people who listen without judging or share in laughter and make life enjoyable in so many ways. But there are those folk who do not make life easy and they are hard to live with. Some people seek to make life miserable and cause us harm. It may not be that we call them our enemies but we know we do not like them. Feelings run deep against these people. Anger. Mistrust. Hatred. Emotions run deep.
Monday is a new day. For many it is the start of a new work week or school. This is the day we complain most about because it is Monday. But this can be a pivotal day of the week as we have been refreshed from a time of worship on Sunday and a new chapter unfolds itself before us. Let us consider the people in our lives that we have a hard time getting along with.
The sermon on the mountain is filled with many wonderful lessons. Jesus calls us to a higher relationship on so many levels. And He does not leave undone the challenge of what to do about people we may have deep feelings of anger – even hatred – and how we are to deal with them. Get ready to put on some tough armor. Even though this person is someone who hates us, tries to make life miserable for us and succeeds often in causing us pain in life, the Son of God instructs us to love them. Let’s say it is someone we work with. We are to do good to them and not allow bitterness to guide our actions. Standing around the water cooler is not a time to speak evil of them to others. When their name is brought up we refuse to speak in an evil manner. Our actions as children of God show kindness to this person. Yes – to the person that is not kind to me. Monday may be harder than I thought.
Pray. Pray a lot. Pray hard. The Lord calls us to a higher plane and we pray for our enemies like Jesus did on the cross. If He can do it so can I. Making Monday a good day is learning to pray for a good attitude toward those folk that abuse me and to pray forgiveness in the heart. Anger and hatred do not come from the spirit of Christ in me. Jesus instructs my heart to be one of love and forgiveness. When we learn to manifest a kind spirit then the kind of spirit we manifest will be like God. Our Father loves that person as much as He loves me. Jesus died for that person as much as He died for me. Thank you God for loving me. Thank you Jesus for dying for me. Thank you for reminding me that you love THAT person also.
An hour spent in hate is an eternity withdrawn from love. (Ludwig Boerne 1786-1837, Fragmente and Aphorismen, no. 191)