Love Your Enemies (Mt 5:43-48)
Come, Holy Spirit. Make me perfect as the heavenly Father is perfect.
Picture Jesus asking the disciples to imitate the Father.
Jesus continues his demands concerning goodness towards enemies. He contrasts his disciple with the pagans and demands a greater holiness. At the end, Jesus reveals his goal. He wants the disciple to be as perfect as the Heavenly Father.
Gospel Text: (Read slowly, possibly aloud.)
You have heard it said, “You shall love your neighbor but hate your enemy.” I say to you “Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Pray for those who persecute you and insult you. In this way, you can be children of your heavenly Father. He makes the sun rise on the good and the bad. He makes the rain fall on the just and the unjust.
If you love those who love you, what reward shall you have? Do not even sinners do this? If you greet your brothers only, what is unusual about that? Do not even the pagans do that? You must be perfect, as your Heavenly Father is perfect.
Thoughts: (Read all. Ponder the ones that attract you.)
- Jesus leads you to the height of holiness.
- At this new height, Jesus asks you to love everyone and to exclude all hatred.
- He offers you the highest reward. You will be a child of the heavenly Father.
- Look at how God acts. He sends his sun and his rain on everyone, good or bad.
- Jesus wants you to act in every situation as the Father would act.
Affections: (When one touches your heart, use your own words.)
- Jesus, lead me to the heights of holiness.
- O Jesus, give me a new way to live.
- Let your love cast out all my hatred. Make me a child of the heavenly Father.
- I will shower my love, my blessings, my goods upon everyone.
- You call me to be perfect as the Father. I will begin right now. Walk with me, Jesus.
- O Jesus, loving my friends is natural. Even sinners do that. Loving my enemies will be my new goal.
Resolutions: (Possibly you might want to make your own.)
+ I will let everyone into my heart this day.
+ I will remove my hatred and critical spirit.
Thought for the Day: (To recall your meditation.)
Be perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect.