Love your enemies…. Pray for those who hate you… One of the hardest precepts of the Christian faith is the above command of Jesus: To love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. It seems absurd to us and our secular world assures us. For the legal profession says make them pay, take them to court, grind them down. Even counsellors and therapists strive for equanimity and mediation in conflict. It seems contrary to our nature that we should just roll-over and let our adversary do their utmost. Behind these sublime words, however, lies a wealth of wisdom. Firstly, note that the Lord never told us to like our enemies, we don’t have
to be friends with them. One cannot be friends with everyone. But we do have to love them which means to want what is best for them. David wanted what was best for King Saul who was trying to kill him. Don’t wish evil upon your enemies otherwise that same evil may occur to you. We are told to pray for those who dislike us and hate us. Prayer is a work of charity. We pray to God for them for their conversion and happiness. We pray that they may change and become better persons. If we don’t employ these strategies then, there is a real risk that the hate and vengeance that our enemies inflict upon us may infect us and poison our souls. Furthermore, if we don’t forgive others how can we ask God to forgive us? Lastly, only God can give us the grace to forgive others from the heart.
Do not judge! One often hears: ‘Don’t be judgmental!’ It makes one recoil from saying anything about others. Is this what Jesus intended? Do not judge is often misinterpreted. When the Lord said don’t judge others he was reminding us that He alone is God and knows WHY people do things. For we just don’t know other’s motives – unless of course they tell us – and so we cannot judge their intention. But we can judge WHAT has happened. If we see a driver go through a red traffic light we can say that the driver of a VW Golf broke the law and went through a red light because that is what happened. But we cannot and should not judge why the driver of the VW broke the law. Perhaps he is colour blind or was rushing to the hospital or so on…. One may judge the facts of what happens but not the motivation behind those happenings.
The local priest, a keen golfer in the wet, was taking part in the town tournament and was about to tee off when an official came up to him and asked: “Father, sorry to disturb, but those thunderstorm clouds on the horizon could ruin our day, could you say a prayer to ensure that we will have a good day.” The priest lifted his head, smiled, and replied: “Sorry, can’t do... my job states that I focus on sales not management!”
Fr. Peter Murphy – Parish Priest
Fr. Chris Heffernan – Assistant Priest
Fr. Brendan Lee – in residence
Phone (02) 6025 1784 Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Address 550 Prune Street, Lavington PO Box 220 Lavington NSW 264