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Tuesday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

My dear encountered couples:

Christians rave about the Sermon on the Mount. But how many of us actually listen to what Jesus had to say in it? How many of us make it a daily, personal policy to adhere to what Jesus said in that sermon? “Love your enemies,” he said. “Pray for your persecutors.”

Ask yourself: who are my enemies? Why are they my enemies? How does my seeing them as an enemy affect them? Or does it? Most likely, my feelings and attitude toward them affects me more significantly than it affects my enemy. This individual may not even be aware that I consider them an enemy.

Are we keeping ourselves in bondage with our hurt, anger or desire for revenge or by waiting for an apology? If so, we may end up being in bondage for the rest of our lives. Truly we are the only ones who can release ourselves from the bondage to our enemies. At times, our enemies may not have a clue that they have wounded us in some way.

However, Jesus asks much more of us! Jesus tells us to love our enemies. Now that is a huge leap! Also, we are to pray for those individuals who persecute us. Jesus desires that we love others as he loves us. No matter what we do in life, Jesus will never walk away from us when we have disappointed him. No, he stays at our side and continues to love us!

This is the “love” Jesus wants us to have for our families and friends. However, Jesus also desires more for us. Jesus wants us to love every single person as he loves us. Wow! This is asking more than most of us are willing to do!

Take a moment and ask yourself: who is the person in my family that I struggle with? Do I still “love” this person even when I don’t like him or her?

Some people can be real pains, can’t they? “Love them,” Jesus says, “pray for them.” Another test of our commitment to Christ. He sure doesn’t make it easy, does he? But he came to bring us back together. And praying for our enemies is the first step towards shaking hands.

Shall we make it a daily practice?

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