Thursday, April 4, 2013

E is for Enemy


As the mirror steamed over, he wrote on it with his finger.

Love your neighbor

Loathe your neighbor

David liked that. It was poignant and poetic. Julie, he would love. Phil, he would act against. An image of a bomb in a letterbox popped into his mind.”

-          Loathe Your Neighbor ch. 14

 

Is it easier to make friends or enemies? Is it easier to keep friends or enemies? Is it easier to love your friends or your enemies? Most people don’t have enemies because they don’t want them. It usually requires effort to make enemies although sometimes you can incur someone’s continuous wrath without trying, or without even knowing you are the object of their hatred. The point is you generally have to something wrong to a person, or to have them do something wrong to you, to make them an enemy. I think it’s equally easy to make friends and to make enemies. Maintaining friendships, quality friendships, requires effort, and usually, if it s a healthy friendship, reciprocal effort. It is possible to preserve a state of enmity without effort. In fact, doing nothing, will help ensure the acrimony festers. Can you love someone who hates you? Jesus tells us that if we only love our friends we are no different to everyone else. He says that in loving our enemies we demonstrate that we understand the love and grace of God. It can be extremely difficult, virtually impossible to love your enemies. Forgiveness is the key. Unless you have been forgiven and have forgiven yourself, you won’t be able to forgive others, and you will always have enemies, and the worst one will be yourself.

 

12 comments:

  1. I hope I am right in thinking I have no enemies:-) Thanks for visiting my site!
    Happy blogging!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for taking the time to visit and comment. Stoked to hear you are apparently enemy free.

      Delete
  2. I am most familiar with incurring the wrath of someone all the time without trying. As for true enemies...I've been pretty fortunate not to have any. Forgiveness really is the key. Nice post!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is that someone in particular, Tracy?

      Delete
  3. There's an old expression--Kill them with kindness--that seems to work for me when it comes to enemies. But who are our enemies, really? For me, they are those I instinctively avoid or ignore...but sometimes circumstances (or God?) forces me to notice these folks. It helps if our self-worth is grounded in God's love for us! Congrats on the book and thanks for stopping my blog!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said. Heap those proverbial burning coals on their heads.

      Delete
  4. It seems to me that loving ones enemies would keep you from thinking of them as enemies at all. Although I'm never really known anyone that I consider an "enemy".

    ReplyDelete
  5. I don't have enemies, and I try to be kind to everyone, including myself, even under (especially under) trying circumstances. That said, if someone were intentionally and maliciously trying to undermine me or someone I care about, I'm not sure what I'd do. That's not something I'm proud to admit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. that's exactly where the rubber meets the road. How would we handle a genuine enemy? How far could we be pushed before we did something shocking? Excellent segue to my novel, in which the main charcacter does not handle his enemies well at all.

      Delete
  6. Great thoughts. Learning to love as Christ does, seeing beyond a person's faults to the person they can become, can be a challenge, especially if the person has hurty you in some way. I can easily feel this kind of charity for many people, but sometimes it takes time and real effort to forgive.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It does take effort and I guess the reason we have so many problems in the world is that many people can't be bothered.

      Delete