By Pastor Bobby Schuller
“He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that?”
When Jesus says to love your enemies, he’s essentially saying to love everyone and do whatever you can to creatively resolve hostile, enemy-like postures of people towards you – when people disrespect you, when people mess with your stuff, when people say nice things to your face and then e-mail things or text things behind your back. Isn’t it a pleasure when those e-mails and texts are forwarded to us? It means that you, if you’re in business, love your competitors. It means that, if you’re in academia, or in music, or in some kind of an industry where others want to see you fail, you, instead, want to see them thrive because you love them. This is the most difficult and most Christian thing about Jesus’ teaching and one of the most important things that sets us apart in our culture.
What makes you different in the way you treat people than just the average Joe on the street? If you cannot come up with an honest answer to that question, then the assumption is that nothing does. And if nothing makes you different from the average Joe on the street, there’s a problem there. There’s something that needs to be changed and that’s what Jesus is helping us to do when he teaches us to love the unlovable.
Prayer: Dear Lord, help me to love the unlovable. Help me to find creative ways to love those who try to hurt me, defame me, or curse me behind my back. It’s one of the most difficult things you’ve asked me to do, but I know you’ll show me the way. Amen.
Reflection: Whom in your life would you deem the most unlovable? How could you bless that person with the love of Christ?