President’s Perspective: Love Your Enemies

President’s Perspective: Love Your Enemies

Recently I have been reflecting on the 12 disciples that Jesus called, one by one, to be His followers. Most of them were common folk. They were what today we would call blue-collar workers. One stands out differently from the rest, in more ways than one -Matthew. Matthew worked for the hated Romans. I can only imagine James and John, the sons of thunder, having to go to Matthew to pay their taxes; taxes that they were forced to pay to the occupying Romans. It must have been galling to them to stand before Matthew – a fellow Jew – who had sold his soul to the enemy, and hand over their hard earned money.

Even after the disciples had spent some time with Jesus there is evidence that some of that rancorous spirit remained. But the more time they spent with Jesus, the less their differences mattered. After Jesus died and was resurrected those differences seemed to disappear.

We are in a time when expressing a political opinion may indeed be hazardous to your emotional health and physical safety.  But this should not be the case among those who call themselves Christian. Jesus said, “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”  Matthew 5:44

The more time we spend with Jesus, the more our lives will reflect His character. Our words, our actions, and our attitudes will come into line with Jesus’ wish for us, that we love others, no matter how they treat us.

I pray that you will be immersed in His love, and that His love will flow through you to those you meet, even during these strident times.

Mike Edge, Conference President