Friday, July 6, 2012

Love Your Enemies

I had a very insightful English professor during my college experience who studied and taught very passionately literature pertaining to holy writ.  In discussing the Sermon on the Mount he voiced a truth that entered my mind with great power and force and which I have never forgotten.  In reference to loving one's enemies he expressed the point that a Christian should in his or her own heart have no enemies.  This disarmed and altered much of my thinking in that respect and I have from that day to this strived to create an atmosphere within myself that no matter what people do to me, I would view no person as my enemy. 

In striving thus I found that the gospel of meekness took new meaning and life.  If we love all people, we must want always what is in their best interest regardless of their behavior.  If someone strikes us, we have to consider ourselves high enough and near enough to God to realize that they are the one with the problem; the behavior illustrated their weakness and not our worthlessness.  When we recognize this we realize that we are the stronger one and we can then have compassion on the person who has offended us.  If a person insults me it does not diminish my personal worth unless I allow it to do so.   I can make the choice to say within myself "This is a person who is very miserable and that misery has caused him to stain himself with foul language and thoughts.  How much I would like to raise this person to a higher level that he may be happier!"

I have had the opportunity of late to watch over and pray for two people who have in the past been emotionally cruel, physically abusive and psychologically vile to me.  Never have they apologized, sought my forgiveness, or counteracted their damaging behavior.  If ever I had reason to describe a person as my enemy in every respect it would be these two.  But I have come to realize that their own mental attitudes have led them down to a living nightmare and in many ways their lives have wasted away.  I cannot help but exercise compassion on such men.  I invite you to open your hearts and join me in praying for these two anonymous, miserable people and perhaps for one or two of your own.

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