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Friday, February 23, 2007

Do good to them that hate you...

From today's Gospel (via 1962 missal)
At that time Jesus said to his disciples:You have heard that it hath been said: Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy. But I say to you: Love your enemies, do good to them that hate you; and pray for them that persecute and calumniate you: that you may be the children of your Father Who is in heaven, Who maketh His sun to rise upon the good and bad, and raineth upon the just and the unjust. For if you love them that love you, what reward shall you have? Do not even the publicans this? And if you salute your breathren only, what do you more? Do not also the heathens this? Be you therefore perfect, as also your heavenly Father is perfect. Take heed that you do not your justice before men, to be seen by them: otherwise you shall not have a reward of your Father Who is in heaven. Therefore when thou dost an almsdeed, sound not a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be honored by men. Amen I say to you, they have received their reward. But when thou dost alms, let not they left hand know what thy right hand doth: that thine alms may be in secret, and thy Father, Who seeth in secret, will repay thee.
Mt. 5:43-48; 6:1-4

Love is powerful. It is not the fluff of Valentine's cards. When we believe disagreements can only be solved through force, coercion and violence we are doomed to failure; in this life and the next. I read these verses and I wonder how any violence can be done in the name of God or his Son. We have a hard time trusting in God to come through for us, so we strike out on our own and ask for His blessing. Look where we find ourselves. What might our repayment be, had we loved our enemies from the start?