Thursday, June 4, 2015

Loving Your Enemies



Let's talk relationships...and when I say relationships I mean the ones we have with those who we have dubbed our "enemies"...And for the sake of this post lets define the word 'Enemy' before we get to further. Shall we?

Enemy (N): a person who is actively opposed or hostile to someone or something. A thing that harms or weakens something else. (synonyms: opponent, foe, rival, antagonist, challenger, competitor)

 ** Side Note: Urban Dictionary defines Enemy as "Former Friends whose company is no longer considered beneficial to a relationship. 

I, However, often feel like we throw the word enemy around too much and it's usually to describe a person what we hate. But does hating someone really make them your "enemy?" If you just found yourself at a standstill thinking about it, then the answer is No. You can very much hate, or let's use another word because I try not to use the word hate when describing how I feel negatively towards someone..You can very much, detest or highly dislike someone but that doesn't make them your "enemy." Unless this person is or has taken a interest in harming you or has challenged you in some negative way. For example, I personally identify an enemy in my life as someone who has challenged me by "sizing me up," in a way to belittle me to gain their own superiority. But for the person who I highly dislike because of a wronging they've done to me in the past, well I hardly consider them my enemies. Does this make sense? Good, Moving on...

I'm going to be honest, I often find myself battling with Matthew 5:44, the verse above, because the verse reminds us to Love our Enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute* you."  (* Persecute: (v) subject (someone) to hostility and ill-treatment. synonyms: oppress, abuse, victimize, ill-treat, torture). And at the end of the day, wishing well on my "enemies" is really the last thing I want to do. I know you all feel the same way too. Being the bigger person will always be the most difficult thing we have to do. But I also believe that as much as its the most difficult thing, it can also be the most rewarding. and sometimes, being the bigger person is pointless. or so it feels that way from time to time. Over the years I've learned that being the bigger person just means you have enough peace within yourself too overcome the apologies you never got; that or it means that you have enough self-respect and class to allow yourself to be above those who choose to prosecute others.

I've also learned that praying for our enemies is difficult. Especially when those enemies used to be your friends. It's not difficult in a "I don't want to do this because you suck" sort of way, but it's difficult in a "After all this time, after all you've done to me, I still CHOOSE to pray for you and want the best for you...as much as I really don't want too." I know first hand how this difficulty works and how it feels. It's not a nice feeling. and to be honest, it makes me angry, which is why it makes me the bigger person from time to time. Recently I've faced this battle, of really not wanting to pray for someone. But, one early morning I found myself outside drinking my tea and began praying to God to bless this person, actually, a few people. And after my prayer I began to cry. and I yelled "Damnit" before I took another sip of my tea.

I wasn't crying because I felt "forced" to pray for them. I didn't cry because I prayed for them and really didn't want to. I cried because after my prayer, my rather long and tearful prayer to God...I felt happy. I felt like the battle I had just won was not that battle I faced of not wanting this prayer to take place but I had just won a battle in myself of doing something I so badly tried to swallow down. I thought, "Why Pray for someone who probably has no interest in thinking about my existence?" and then it hit me.  It's because at one point on my life, far before that prayer took place, I used to love this person, these people. My Enemies. My Former Friends. I used to cherish them and truly want the best. So now, years later, after all the stones have been thrown, I realize I love my enemies. and it all makes sense. We never stop loving these people, we just now love them in a different way. In a way that they wouldn't understand and probably wouldn't like if they knew. but thats okay, because those of us who pray for our enemies are the bigger people. Our enemies want us to hate them as they that us. So when we pray for our enemies and we show them love, they lose.

I Challenge You... To find that peace within yourself. Take hold of how you see your enemies and don't let their actions wavier your eagerness to pray for their well being. Be the Winner. Because at the end of the day, even when it seems like your actions are for nothing...they are a lot bigger than you think. And what a blessing that is to know. #loveyourenemieswithoutfail

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