Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Love Your Enemies


Matthew 5:43-45
"You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.'  But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your father in heaven.  He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous . . .

I subscribe to a daily post hosted my former Arkansas governor, Mike Huckabee, called Godfruits.  Everyday, I know I can open this gift and find Biblical encouragement, good news videos and stories, and vital inspiration for my daily faith walk.  It has been both boon and blessing to me in a myriad of ways.

So, today, instead of sharing my own reflections with you, I choose to offer this commentary from Godfruits as a "guest post."  I hope you will read and be inspired!

An Armenian nurse had been held captive along with her brother by the Turks.  Her brother was slain by a Turkish soldier before her eyes.  Somehow, she escaped and, later, became a nurse in a military hospital.

One day, she was stunned to find that the same man who had killed her brother had been captured and brought, wounded, to the hospital where she worked.  Something within her cried out, "Vengeance!"  But, a stronger voice called for her to love.  She nursed the man back to health.

Finally, the recuperating soldier asked her, "Why didn't you let me die?"

Her answer was, "I am a follower of Him who said, 'Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you.'

Impressed with her answer, the young soldier replied, "I never heard such words before.  Tell me more.  I want this kind of religion."

~

Is this the kind of religion you want, too?

Will you pray with me?
Father, how can we ever thank You enough for sending Your precious Son, Christ Jesus, to teach us the power of love and forgiveness?  May the lesson taught to us by this devoted nurse help us to search our hearts and souls, and to forgive readily with humble and grateful hearts.  Help us to forgive others as Jesus forgave us.  Amen.

4 comments:

  1. When I came back home and had to face the person I hated all my life in my growing up years ~ I thought if I forgive, it'll be a sign of weakness on my part ~ but there was also inside me a gnawing voice that cries out to be liberated.I want to love and I also want to receive it...

    Most of the time, we hate other people and even ourselves for many years... but I think, even if we don't admit it, most of our rebellion comes from hating God too...

    The story you shared and your reflections touched my very core. I pray with you that God may touch our hearts ~ dissolve everything that keeps us from loving Him and others. We pray that we may learn to bow down and humble ourselves before Him and experience true forgiveness and mercy deep within us.

    Thank you very much for reminding me of the value of loving beyond what I am capable of ~ only the Lord could infuse that great love within each one of us. I love you lots dear friend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Forgiveness of enemies . . . the hardest part for me in being a Christian. But, Christ commands it. We can only ignore Him for so long before He convinces us that our inability to forgive is because we are relying upon ourselves, not upon His inimitable power.
      He is the first to love, the first to forgive, the first to teach us, created in His image, how to do so. Still, hard . . . Being human means being vulnerable and gullible to the calls of this world. And, if we let that hatred grow, we can find ourselves hating God, too . . .
      Because, the world will always let us down, always disappoint. . . We are God's chosen, not of this world, but of His. Let us celebrate, my dear, in this always!

      Delete
  2. Always forgive, no matter the crime against you, or you will be the one to suffer. As I always say, love honestly, especially self. Good story Martha, thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jesus knew how lack of forgiveness damages our psyche. How can we love others when we fail to love God first, and forgive as He required?
      Not easy, never, but necessary.
      Thanks for coming by, Sunflowergirle~

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