Read Matthew 5:43-48
“I love everyone.” Easy to say, hard to live.
“I love everyone, but I don’t have to like them all.” It may be technically true, but is not very biblical.
“I love those who are like-minded in Christ.” Now, you’re just falling off the path.
What did Jesus say on the mountain? Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven.
If you love those who love you, what good is that? Anybody can do that…even tax collectors or tattoo artists, for that matter! What good does it do for Christ followers to say hello to other Christians? How does that set us apart?
But my enemy? Really, my enemy? I have to speak to them? I have to love them? You don’t know what they did to me.
Am I the only one having a hard time with Jesus here? I mean, he’s asking us to be perfect, as God is perfect. I’m not, I can’t be. Can you?
Boom. It hits me. I’m right. We can’t be perfect; not without Jesus. Without Jesus, I can’t stand to be in the presence of my enemy, much less acknowledge or love him. It is going to take an extraordinary change in my life and a complete filling of the Holy Spirit for me to love like Jesus loves.
Showing love to your enemy not only pleases God, but it knocks the socks off of the enemy. They’re stunned, flabbergasted, shocked, silenced. Even if it’s only for a moment before evil raises its ugly head again, they’ve been touched by the love of Jesus through you. It’s a love that’s undeniable, and they know it. There’s nothing that can stand up against it in the end, try as they may. It may not change them that very moment or day or year, but it will impact them, because it causes them to recognize the difference that Jesus made in the life of their enemy. It causes them to eventually have to make a choice, yes or no, for Jesus.
When we bless our enemies with goodness like the sun and rain, they see God in us. That’s the strongest weapon against the darkness that blinds them. It pierces through and holds them accountable.
So, what if your enemy walks in to your office tomorrow? Will you say hello? Will you pierce the darkness with the light of love? I’m going to work toward perfection.
What about you?