Tag Archives: love your enemy

Unity Through Prayer

Our world is more polarized and divided now than ever in my lifetime. We’re divided politically, socially, on masks, on justice issues and just about anything you can think of. I’m a person who loves to read comments on social media because I love how creative and funny people are. However, lately, I see a lot of arguments in the comments with hateful attacks toward each other over the littlest things. I watched a video by a comedian recently and then went to the comments. People were attacking him, his humor, his lack of humor, people who thought it was funny and people who didn’t. It’s easy to think that the division of people is something new, but it’s been around since the beginning. It’s one of the most effective tools in our enemy’s belt.

Satan used his divisive techniques on Adam and Eve to get them separated from God. He used it on Cain to kill Abel. Moses and the Israelites dealt with it over and over in the wilderness. You can’t read something in the Bible hardly without seeing the conflict. When Paul wrote his first letter to Timothy, Nero was the ruler and he was decapitating Christians and using their heads as torches to light the city. There were people named at the end of chapter 1 who were opposed to the message of Christ that Paul said that he handed over to Satan to be rid of them. Interestingly though, immediately after that verse, chapter two starts and Paul takes a different tone towards those who were polar opposites from him and the faith.

1 Timothy 2:1 says, “Most of all, I’m writing to encourage you to pray with gratitude to God. Pray for all men with all forms of prayers and requests as you intercede with intense passion” (TPT). The next verse says to pray for political leaders, even those opposed to your way of thinking, referring to Nero. You and I have a responsibility right now, in today’s climate to bring unity through prayer. It’s hard to hate someone you pray and intensely intercede for. Are we so busy arguing our side of things that we’ve forgotten to pray for those opposed to us? Romans 12:20 said if our enemy was hungry, we should buy them lunch. Where is that kind of love today? I’m praying that God would give me, and Christians everywhere, that kind of heart instead of an argumentative one. I think there’s a time and place to defend our way of life, but they shouldn’t know us by our arguments or eloquent defense. They should know us by our love.

Photo by Benjamin Suter on Unsplash

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Following The Pattern

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My pastor’s wife was sharing a story with me a few weeks ago. She was telling me about a wedding in the church where several ladies were tasked with sewing the bridesmaid’s dresses. One of the ladies went to her and said, “When you get to the part where the sleeve attaches to the dress, follow the instructions. It’s not going to make sense and it’s going to go against everything you know about sewing, but follow the pattern. It will work.” A few days later she got to the sleeve and looked at the pattern. She thought, “This isn’t right. It won’t work.” She then remembered the word of the other lady and followed the pattern.

When she finished, the dress came out the way it was intended. She’s still not sure how. She just knows that for that dress, it seemed wrong to her, but she stuck with the pattern and it worked. It’s a lot like God’s Word. There’s some stuff in there that doesn’t make sense. Love your enemies. If you want to be first, be last. Celebrate finding one sheep instead of being happy with the 99. Bless those who curse you. There are a lot of things that seem backwards when we first look at them, but ultimately the pattern of God’s Word works.

I was praying on Saturday night about what scripture to read for service on Sunday morning. God clearly spoke, “Psalms 143.” I closed my eyes and went to bed. I woke up early Sunday morning and read it first thing. I immediately thought, “This can’t be right. Maybe I didn’t hear you, God.” I proceeded to read Psalms 140-145. I decided that Psalm 145 was what God meant. I highlighted each verse so I could copy it and paste it in my notes. Right before I clicked “copy”, the voice of The Lord spoke and said, “Really? You’re going to ask what I want and then change it?” I immediately went to Psalm 143, copied it and pasted it.

When it came time for me to read the scripture, it became abundantly clear that Psalm 143 was the right choice. It didn’t make sense to me at the time God spoke it, but in the moment, it was perfect. God does that to us a lot. He asks us to do things that don’t make sense in the moment or on the surface. It goes against what we think should happen, but He asks us to follow His pattern no matter what. He knows the final outcome. He knows what your future moments will be like and He asks you to trust Him now even when it doesn’t make sense. You’ll be glad you did when it’s over. His ways are higher than ours. He knows best. Trust Him today even when you can’t see how it will work.

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