The shock, fear, horror, disbelief, tears, and now painful memories of what happened on September 11, 2001 fill our minds today in the U.S. and around the world. And thirteen years later the world still seems to be in chaos. The good news is that God, the Creator of the entire universe and our world, is still on His throne and in control of all things. He is good and works all things for good, even the evil which kills thousands. King David, who walked closely with God and experienced evil in his own life, wrote, “For God is the King of all the earth… God reigns over the nations; God sits on his holy throne.” (Psalm 47:7-8) “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!” (Psalm 34:8)
As we trust in God’s plans and goodness we still have to live in the midst of sorrow and pain. So what do we do as followers of Jesus, as those who are abiding with Him and have our hope in Him? He has told us what to do very clearly. Jesus told us to love our enemies and to love each other.
Jesus said, “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.” (Luke 6:27-28)
He also told His disciples to love each other, the family of believers, our brothers and sisters in Christ. “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” (John 13:34-35)
As the early believers were facing sorrow, pain, and persecution Paul told them to love each other and to take care of each other. Paul wrote to the Galatians, “…through love serve one another.” (5:13) and “Whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone, especially to our Christian brothers and sisters.” (6:9, NLT) As we abide with Jesus, His love flows through our lives to the world and what greater way to show His love than to our enemies and to our family. We pray for our enemies to find hope in Jesus, to know His love and forgiveness. We pray for our family of believers in the Middle East to have God’s strength right now as they face such evil and death. We can also love them by giving to their needs through several Christian organizations that are there with them in person.
What will you do this week to show your love for your enemies? What will you do to love those in the family of Christ? Will you take time to pray for them? I would like to know what you are doing. I will be praying for and supporting those groups of Christians who are showing love to our persecuted family in Iraq and around the world. And my enemies? I will pray that they will trust in God’s love and forgiveness through Jesus.
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