Sunday, March 4, 2012

#14 praying for enemies.... "

44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be sons 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. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. [Matthew 5:44]

I don't know about you but the above verses have always been a struggle for me.  This is one of the reasons that at the church where I pastor I pray these verses almost every single Sunday.  During our time of corporate prayer I pray that we would, "love our enemies, do good to those who hate us, bless those who curse us, and pray for those that mistreat us; so in this way we can show the true love of God to a hurting world..." or something along these lines.  I do this so that these words will be ever front and center in our lives. 

These words became more powerful to me this past week.  This past week I was hurt by a person.  I have been hurt by them in the past.  [And do not start a matter of fact, if you are reading this I am sure you are not that person....] And this past week I found myself inwardly very angry and upset.  In my mind I was thinking of all the past, "hurts" that have occurred.  And I was thinking about this person in a very negative light.  

But then it simply hit me like a ton of bricks..."you have never once prayed for this have simply remained angry at them..."  Sometimes I can have such blind spots.  So I prayed.  And I did not pray that this person would, "see the light" of their actions.  I simply prayed that God would bless them.  I prayed that I would find a way to bless them.  I prayed that God would change my heart towards this person.  And something amazing happened.  The bitterness and anger that I was feeling vanished.  Quite literally the Holy Ghost took it away.  A load of bricks was lifted.  It was wonderful.  

Now, this was not some one-time magic pill.  The next day I started feeling angry again...but this time I was armored up.  So as soon as I felt the anger begin to well up, I prayed.  I prayed that God would bless them - and I began thinking of ways that I could be a blessing to them.  

Then fear crept in....I thought to myself something along the lines of this, "well Chris...if you keep blessing this person than this person may want to spend time with you...and you certainly do not want that to happen!!!!  I had to laugh right there at the devil.  Who knows?  Perhaps we can become the best of friends.  

The simple fact of the matter is it is a worldly mentality to fight fire with fire.  It is a worldly mentality to let anger stew.  To pray that God would bless our enemies - and to literally do good to those who hate us - that is a Jesus standard; and I truly pray we live the Jesus standard.  Amen.


  1. Again Amen and yes brothe this is a serious weakness in my spiritual armor! You know how ive strugled with this at work so much of my flesh is tied to this one. I know what i must do but like Paul said I practice what I do not wish to do especially on this one brother! How this hits my heart so much, I to must die daily boy there is so much to burn in the refiner's fire to come for me on this ONE THING! I might be the hold up in the rapture as you all wait for me to burn away the dross of my flesh on this one. Im such a thug at heart on this issue I feel so much like Luther, May God have mercy on me!

  2. Amen brother. But isn't God good that through Christ we are forgiven!

    1. Yes and of course this ties into one of your other lenten lessons about forgiving oneself. Just noting my struggle here and im glad God is more merciful than we are! Man I suck but God cares for me anyway.