TODAY'S WORD 4U 2DAY
RELENTLESS KINDNESSRomans 12:14
When Jesus preached His sermon on the mount, He didn’t add a stage whisper to the front row, ‘You lot love your enemies... but not you guys. You get a free pass on this one.’ No, Jesus’ revolutionary new idea was intended to be carried out by every Christian, and it was for every kind of person. We might not have enemies in the way the people Jesus was speaking to had then (think: nations and armies), but we’re not off the hook just because our enemies aren’t carrying swords or death threats. We probably certainly have enemies in a very real sense (think: people who hack you off, get you down, or oppose your beliefs.)
We’re on this planet in order to be a self-sacrificing blessing, even to those sorts of people. You could say that God followers are intentionally ‘anti-me’. People are supposed to recognise us because of the way we extravagantly bless others, even those who persecute us.
Okay, so we do a few good deeds for needy folks, but doesn’t blessing our enemy make us a bit of a walk-over? Well, which is more likely to lead them to Christ, blessing and praying for them, or fighting and keeping our distance from them? It’s a severe test of your faith, but in order to follow Jesus, we need to bless others, including those who disagree with you, or rubbish your beliefs, or just plain irritate you. Actually, this isn’t a message about other people, it’s about sorting your own perspective out.
Author Ann Voskamp said, “If we only got into the Christ-faith through the door of forgiveness, how can we claim Christ as our home if we aren’t people who forgive?” Do we believe in the forgiveness of other peoples’ sins, or just our own? If we do, this means practical steps. It could look like this: next time you and your friends are going ten-pin bowling or to the cinema, invite somebody who has wronged you along too.