Monday, January 11, 2010

Reflection for the Week

Jesus said, love your enemies. This remarkable command shows us something of what being a Christian is all about. While loving our enemies may not always be a possibility because of broken trust, abuse, betrayal, or oppression, a gracious extension of forgiveness is a necessary step. Love remains the target to aim for and then we must see how far we can come towards this in actuality. Love is to be a lens through which we act and through which we are seen and identified by others, including enemies.


Nita said...

Hi, Greg! That's a very tough one, my friend! Especially nowadays as we live in an epoch of escalation of hatred, not only individual forms of hatred (think of the grammar of our everyday talks "I hate such and such") but also collective, national, ethnic hatred, which seems to be all over. Dom Helder Camara, the Brazilian liberationist bishop, used to evoke the spiral of violence as the impossibility of breaking away from this escalation of hatred: the more we hate others (even those who in one way or another morally deserve to be repudiated) the more hateful and violent our world becomes... And, what seems to be the worst part, a lot of innocent people are caught in this process --just think of all Islamophobia that has been generated by the war on terror or even by our moral condemnation of terrorist actions. In many developing societies, as in Brazil, the poor in the favelas are often the victims of brutal actions brought about by the police in their (supposedly justified) war on drugs. This reminds me of the dictum that we must hate sin but love sinners. I personally cannot think of overcoming social, collective hatred and racial, ethnic pathologies without such a radical view of love --but I tell you, it is damn hard to fully stick to it.

Greg said...

Thanks. Well said! Considering the plight of so many in our world; the hatred and vicious oppression brought on by the lust for power and money, these words of Jesus must be his most difficult to comprehend and act upon. Yet, somehow with God's help, forgiveness tied to naming wrongs would be in the interest of a loving trajectory that might begin to diminish personal vindication in the name of the Christ.