Join us as we reflect, ponder, and pray together inspired by today's Gospel.
Reflection by Laurann Donahue
Today's Gospel: Matthew 5:43-48
Love your enemies…What could Jesus have meant? As He said, it is easy to love someone who loves you. “You’ve heard it said” love your neighbor -- in Leviticus 19:18. But this Jewish precept meant love fellow Jews, certainly not Gentiles. But Jesus asks them and us to do the hard thing: love those who we consider enemies. Tax collectors and pagans are cited as enemies, yet Jesus not only speaks to tax collectors and pagans, He spends time with them. One of His own disciples, Matthew himself, was a tax collector. Jesus is the ultimate example of loving your enemy. His message of love was His way of life.
He went on to tell us “to be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.” I read once that this is phrase is slightly different than the literal translation, which says we should be in “complete devotion” to the Father just as our Heavenly Father is “complete in His devotion” to us. To me that makes more sense than “perfect”. Whenever I hear the word perfect, I think of sinlessness. None of us can be perfectly sinless like God the Father. I like the idea of striving to be completely devoted to God. We can spend our whole lives doing that. In this day and age, it is not an easy thing with all the distractions and evil in the world. But loving our enemy, those who it is hard to love, is just one small step bringing us closer to that complete devotion to God.
Can I be completely devoted to God?
Father, help me to love my enemy as Jesus taught me to do. Help me turn that love into complete devotion to You.
Copyright 2020 Laurann Donohue
About the Author
Our Gospel Reflections Team is comprised of over 115 volunteers. We invite you to join us daily to reflect upon the Liturgy of the Word and thank our volunteers for sharing their gifts.