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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Love Your Enemy - John

Sometimes we find it difficult to love some people, especially those we might consider our enemy.  However, God's Word tells us that we must love them. This week we have an out-of-town preacher in town doing a series of lessons about "Moments With Christ".  The lessons have been encouraging and thought-provoking.  By the end of each lesson, I'm sure that most everyone has gone away from the building feeling closer to God and wanting to live more like His Son, Jesus.  I know I have.

Tonight the preacher had us look at this passage in Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things."

Then he asked each of us to think of someone who we didn't care for or someone we felt like had wronged us.  He suggested putting their name at the top of a piece of paper sometime and  then writing the above words down the left side:  true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy.  Using those words, he suggested writing something good about the person whose name we had written.  As an example, I'll use the name John, and pretend he is someone I am feeling is my enemy.  Even though I may have a real problem with John, I would take the time to find something good to say about him using each of these words.  So my paper would look like this:

JOHN
True:  John is a good dad. 
Noble:  John seems to be a good employee.
Right:  John is a hard worker.
Pure:  John seems to live a holy life.
Lovely:  John does a good job teaching Bible class.
Admirable:  John is a good husband.
Excellent: John sings well.
Praiseworthy:  John helps the elderly in the church.

Now, this was "fake" and by the time I finished writing all about "John", I felt better about my "problem" with him and IT'S ALL MADE UP!  I know a John, in fact two that I can think of right now, but this situation wasn't real.  Imagine how it would make you and I feel if we took the time to do this with someone we REALLY felt was our enemy?  Why don't you try it today and see how you feel afterwards?

2 comments:

Wa Wa Waughs said...

good exercise....you know when I was teaching we were encouraged to put something good about each student on the report card area that said "comments." With some students it was a real struggle to think of something good, but it challenged me to think better of them! I try to do this when frustrated by someone...

Beth@Not a Bow in Sight said...

Amen! It's good to look at things from God's perspective!

 
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