“A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
I think the vast majority of us have a hard time putting ourselves in the shoes of Jesus. If we are totally honest, we often have a hard time forgiving our friends. There are rare times when we would even consider forgiving someone we do not like. We do not even hope that good things happen to those we dislike.
But Jesus was totally different. He became one of us in order to save all of us. It did not matter whether the people were for or against Him. It did not matter whether they participated in crucifying Him or not. Jesus lived for all people and Jesus died for all people.
While that is one thing in which we take great comfort, that is also one thing that provides the most problem for us because we are called to be just like Jesus. How can we wish good for our enemies? How can we hope that those we dislike have an absolutely wonderful life? How can we forgive those who turn against us?
It is in our human nature to fight fire with fire. If someone turns against us, we turn against them. If someone despises us, we despise them. If someone fails to give us the time of day, we are not going to treat them well. That’s the way it goes.
But, that’s not the way it’s supposed to go. Jesus wants us to rise above our human nature and to embrace the nature and values of God. God is pure love. God is pure forgiveness. God is totally inclusive. Why can we not be the same?
FAITH ACTION: Pray for the good of all people today, even those you may not like.