“Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy; but I say unto you, 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.” Matt. 5: 43- 44
Today’s Christian Daily Devotional
Many people laugh when I tell them that I believe in Jesus Christ. I have been told that only a weak person who has real issues admits to loving Jesus. If that is true, then they are right. I am weak. I have issues. I cannot remember a time when I wasn’t this way. For a long time, I did a good job overcompensating for these shortcomings by parading around with my mask of pride. But when I came home, and the windows were drawn, I would crumble with the truth of what was really behind that mask. The work and effort it took just to keep up with “being me” was just too much to handle. When I turned to God and accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior, it did not matter anymore that I was weak. I found someone strong enough to carry me (and all of my heavy issues). It felt good to relax, to be loved in my broken state, and to see the slow progress of change for the better (as the Holy Spirit worked in me). As I reflect and ponder this verse I can see what a difference accepting Christ in my heart has made in my life. In Matt. 5: 43- 44 Jesus Himself instructs all of His followers to pray and bless those that despitefully use them and persecute them. I don’t know about you, but for me to do that—I have to have some kind of supernatural ability. (I am just not that way!) Personally, I think that doing this is one of the greatest challenges for any believer in Christ to accomplish. Forgiving, blessing and praying for the very people that are inflicting pain on us does not show weakness—it reflects a strength of character that is so beyond reason that it has to be God (that is working in us). Today I challenge you to do the impossible: Forgive. Pray. Bless. Especially do it to the ones who bring out the “worst” in you—because when you do, you not only empower God to work on your behalf, you become less like THEM and more like GOD. You can do it. Remember, with God on your side, nothing is impossible!
“Dear Heavenly Father,
It is an honor to be laughed at for your name’s sake. I thank you for the privilege of being called a fool for Christ. (You know I have been a fool for far less.) Lord, strengthen my spirit to see people and their hurtful looks, comments and gestures as a cry out for me to pray from them. Help me to give up my tendency to get angry and help me get on my knees, as these very people have never let themselves be been warmed by the love of you. Lord, I know how much you love them, because I see how much you love me and I was the worst of all sinners that I personally know! Every time they laugh at me and your name, it is like spitting in the face of Jesus Christ Himself as He hung on the cross willfully for them. Give me the same strength as Christ had when He said to you, “Forgive them Lord, for they know not what they do.” Help me to mean it from the bottom of my broken heart. In Jesus’ precious name, bless me with that kind of supernatural love, Amen.”