January 6, 2010
Title: Do I have to love everyone? What if they’re…
Readings: Gen 13:5-15:21, Matthew 5:27-48, Psalm 6:1-10, Proverbs 1:29-33
S – Scripture:
‘If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that.’ Mt. 5:47
O – Observation:
The scripture verses of Mt 5:43-48 talk about the law of loving your neighbor, and your enemies! To pray for those who persecute you! Which is the way we should behave as ‘true children of our Father in Heaven.’ If we don’t love everyone, then we are just like everyone else in the world that doesn’t believe in Jesus Christ (pagans). The scriptures say that it’s easy to love those who love you, but even corrupt tax collectors do that.
A – Application:
Of all the things that I am to do as a child of God I find this one of the most challenging. I have a difficult time praying for someone who has wronged me. I have negative thoughts of people who are unkind, lack integrity, and are just plain spiteful that it’s very difficult to do what God asks of me. I remember talking to a Christian sister about a person I worked with, who was, well let’s say a very difficult person to be around. After hearing me gripe about the person and their evil ways, my ‘sister’ said, “Did you pray for her?” – I gasped and said, “how can I pray for someone as horrible as that?” She wisely said, “Because that’s what Jesus wants us to do.”
I struggled over the next few days during my prayer time. I couldn’t even get the person’s name out of my mouth to pray for them. I found that I had to ask the Lord for forgiveness first. I had to pray that the Lord would soften my heart towards that person first, because it’s easier to pray for someone I cared for. I needed to have a heart like Christ, to love everyone, even when “I” didn’t think they deserved it. I need to remember that “I” didn’t deserve God’s love, yet he gave his only son for my life. Once I forgave, I was able to pray with sincerity.
P – Prayer:
Father help me to remember these scriptures in my daily life. Help me to remember your love for us, even though we didn’t deserve your love and grace, you cared for us and gave us your Son so that we can have eternal life. I pray that as I grow in your grace, that I will offer that same grace to others. I pray that you will help me be a better example; to be called your child is an honor that I do not deserve. I pray that I can love the way you love us. ###