Loving Your Enemies – Pray for them

‘Ibigin ang Kaaway’

That article from Joey Umali’s Book, “Kay Jesus, May Pag-asa ang Bukas, May bukas ang Pag-asa” has really lodged itself into my mind, that I felt compelled to write about it, even after using it as a basis for a group devotion last Saturday.

   “You heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neghbor and hate your enemy.’

But I say yo you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you”

-Matthew 5:43-44

Jesus commands us to act in an unorthodox manner when it comes to dealing with our opponents: fight them with love.

 

The article’s author further expands the ways in which we could love our enemies. He lists down five verbs in succession, with the ones following being much harder to do than the previous. These things will be next to impossible to do without the Holy Spirit in us:

1. Pray for them

2. Do Good to them

3. Forgive them and Forget what they did to you

4. Approach them

5. Trust them

For the sake of brevity, we will only be tackling number 1 for today.

How do you pray for those who ‘persecute you’? Does wishing for them to choke on their food (‘mabulunan ka sana’) or to trip while walking (‘madapa ka sana’) count? obviously, not. That wouldn’t be love.

Pray for their well-being, genuinely.

Pray that they may encounter God in fresh ways

Pray for God to work in their lives.

Pray for their concerns.

Then again, while we are still on the subject of prayer, it would sure be best if we’d pray for ourselves first, that God would change our attitudes, so that we could learn to love our enemies the way God does. We were, after all, ‘enemies of God’ before we were reconciled to him.

As we pray for those people whom we don’t like, or for those who don’t like us, our hearts are changed. Love the feeling, after all, is a fruit of love the verb.

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