luke 6:27, 28; romans 12:20, 21
“But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” “…if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head…Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.”
raise the bar:
we are “set apart”! we are sanctified. we can’t afford to treat people who’ve have done us wrong (or for that matter, like mike guglielmucci, shamed the Christian faith), how the world would treat them. then what makes us any different than the world!? for Christ’s sake! literally. for the sake of Jesus, who gave up his throne in heaven and eventually gave up his dignity & his very life-blood. for the sake & glory of Jesus who forgave us our every sin, we need to strive as one body to live above the standards of your average joe…even your average Christian joe.
one major way we can do this is by forgiving beyond what we think we can, by praying. how about somethin’ like, “Lord, i wanna see _____ the way you see them. even though they did this, give me compassion for them & help me see past my own hurt. give me your eyes for them. your heart for them. forgive them.” or if you can’t muster up all that with sincerity, then heck, start with a simple, “God, show ____ your love today”. what if two weeks of that consistent prayer leads to actually meaning it…which leads to real forgiveness…which leads to freedom and maybe even restoration and salvation?! itellyouwhat. get ready to take the limits off of His blessings when you act in obedience.
Q 4 U:
when’s the last time you blessed someone who cursed (or mistreated) you? do you think it’s tougher, the closer that person is to you?
we’ve all been judged or shamed. we remember the pain. or do we? does the extent to which we give grace to others depend on how long ago it was given to us?