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what to do with your enemies
"Now the men were seized with great fear and said to him, 'How could you do such a thing!' — They knew that he was fleeing from the Lord." —Jonah 1:10
The Lord called Jonah to convert the Ninevites, the people he probably hated most (see Jon 1:1ff; Na 1:1ff). The Holy Spirit called the early Church to convert the Samaritans, who were among the people these Jewish Christians formerly had hated most (see Acts 1:8; Lk 10:33ff). The early Christians eventually converted much of the Roman empire. Christians naturally were tempted to hate Romans, since they had martyred so many Christians.
Throughout most of Christian history, there has been reason to believe that Christians are called to convert the Muslims. This has not happened to any great extent. Possibly we don't love Muslims very much.
Why don't more black people convert more white people to Jesus? Or why don't more whites convert more blacks? Without love, we are nothing and "gain nothing" (1 Cor 13:3).
Why do so many Christians disobey Christ and refuse to share their faith? If we lack the love to work in what may be our most fruitful mission fields, we have deprived ourselves of the best inspiration for enthusiasm in evangelization.
We either forgive, love, and evangelize our enemies, or we warp the dynamics of life in Christ. Love the most unlovable and give them your best, that is, your faith.
Prayer: Father, open my eyes to the reasons behind my temptations to hate my enemies.
Promise: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself." —Lk 10:27
Praise: Because St. Bruno stood up for truth, he made an enemy of a powerful man at whose hands he suffered persecution.
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Giles H. Pater, April 24, 2003
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 28, 2003