Vs 44, 45 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven;
We live in a world in which the words like hatred, violence, selfishness, deceit, etc. have taken over the old values such as love, care, compassion, concern, tolerance, and so on. But all is not lost. Some of us may have read about the Good Samaritan who sacrificed his own life while attempting to rescue a couple of manual laborers who had fallen down into a manhole in Kozhikode, Kerala, India. Such acts of kindness and concern toward others, who are caught up in trouble, are seldom if ever heard of.
In the context of the ongoing violence throughout the world, the teachings of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and especially in the verse above, become very meaningful and valuable. It is the responsibility of each one of us to let the world know His teachings through our words and actions. It is only when we imitate Christ in our life that we become authentic believers (Phil. 2:1-5). While under house arrest in Rome, Paul wrote to the believers in the city of Philippi that "whatever happens conduct yourself in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ" (Phil. 1:27). The Gospel is a message of pure love, willing sacrifice, redemptive suffering, and the gracious offer of salvation. It is the visible expression of Christ's heart and that is what we are expected to imitate as a true follower of Christ.
While on a visit to London, a person during his conversation with Sadhu Sunder Singh was asked to explain about the love and attitude of Jesus Christ. He explained in this way: when naughty children throw stones at a mango tree that are full of ripe and colorful mangoes, the tree in turn does not react with anger, vengeance, or retaliation. What does it do? It reacts with love and compassion, and drops off sweet and delicious mangoes. This is the attitude of Jesus, our Savior. He demands His followers to do likewise.
As the God-Man hung above those who crucified Him, He prayed for them and loved them with the kind of love that could have healed them on the spot! "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing" (Luke 23:34).
Gracious Father, thank you for Your sacrificial love for us. Help us to reveal Your love to others through our selfless life. Amen
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
"If I am inconsiderate about the comfort of others, or their feelings, or even their little weaknesses; if I am careless about their little hurts and miss opportunities to smooth their way, then I know nothing of Calvary’s love." Amy Carmichael
Daniel Thomas, Orlando MTC, FLChristian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church