February 21, 2011

LOVE your enemies


Love your enemies, yes!  No, I'm not talking about cupcakes and chocolate.  But wouldn't it be nice if that was what the Bible meant!  Most of us don't have real "enemies" these days.  Typically we just have those few "difficult personalities" (and "diet thwarting sweets") to deal with, whether in the family, workplace, or church.  The best thing to do whenever we are trying to change our old thought patterns, go against our nature and become more like Christ is to stand on His word.  So please take 2 minutes and read the next 5 verses, and let them really sink into your heart today:
"You’re familiar with the old written law, ‘Love your friend,’ and its unwritten companion, ‘Hate your enemy.’I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer,for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves. This is what God does. He gives his best—the sun to warm and the rain to nourish—to everyone, regardless: the good and bad, the nice and nasty.If all you do is love the lovable, do you expect a bonus? Anybody can do that.If you simply say hello to those who greet you, do you expect a medal? Any run-of-the-mill sinner does that. In a word, what I’m saying is, Grow up. You’re kingdom subjects. Now live like it. Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you. " - Matthew 5:43-48 (The Message, emphasis added).
"Live out your God-created identity."  Don't let ANYTHING get in your way of that, not even a stubborn personality.  "Live generously and graciously toward others..."and how do we do that?  "...the way God lives toward you."
Think about (or study) the way God thinks of you, I know that He loves you so much He sent His ONLY Son to die for you, so you could be with Him for eternity (John 3:16).  I know that His thoughts about you are so numerous, you could count every star in the sky, every grain of sand on the earth, and He still thinks about you more (Psalm 139:17-18).  Even before you were born, He knew you, He formed you (Psalm 139:13-16).  He thinks you're good (Genesis 1:27, 31).
Whew!  That's a lot to live up to, and not easy to do, but I believe if we are just willing to try, slowly we will become more like Christ.  And hey, it may even get easier to love our enemies with practice (chocolates and all)! =)
Love you ladies (and you male readers too)! Thanks for letting me share my thoughts with you again and again!

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