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June 15, 2021

Mt 5: 43-48

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. 

For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.

In touch with God’s transforming love

Every honest person knows they are not perfect. We Christians especially are called to recognize that we are sinners, so what is Jesus getting at by telling us to be perfect?

We need to love people—all of whom are imperfect sinners just like ourselves. But what does that love consist of?

St. Thomas Aquinas says love is willing the good of the other. Jesus, therefore, wants us to will the good of both our friends and our enemies. And the true good is always rooted in that same love of God we’ve received and are called to share.

The love that Jesus calls us to is impossible without God’s grace. We need to stay rooted in that grace to draw from the eternal wellsprings of God’s love, and we do that through prayer.

What ways of praying help keep you in touch with God’s transforming love? Do you make space for that prayer every day?

—Ian Peoples, SJ, is a Jesuit of the Central and Southern Province working as a prison chaplain and campus minister in Belize City.

 

Prayer

How do you, Lord, look at me?
What do you feel in your heart for me?

—John Eagan, SJ


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

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June 15, 2021

Mt 5: 43-48

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. 

For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.

In touch with God’s transforming love

Every honest person knows they are not perfect. We Christians especially are called to recognize that we are sinners, so what is Jesus getting at by telling us to be perfect?

We need to love people—all of whom are imperfect sinners just like ourselves. But what does that love consist of?

St. Thomas Aquinas says love is willing the good of the other. Jesus, therefore, wants us to will the good of both our friends and our enemies. And the true good is always rooted in that same love of God we’ve received and are called to share.

The love that Jesus calls us to is impossible without God’s grace. We need to stay rooted in that grace to draw from the eternal wellsprings of God’s love, and we do that through prayer.

What ways of praying help keep you in touch with God’s transforming love? Do you make space for that prayer every day?

—Ian Peoples, SJ, is a Jesuit of the Central and Southern Province working as a prison chaplain and campus minister in Belize City.

 

Prayer

How do you, Lord, look at me?
What do you feel in your heart for me?

—John Eagan, SJ


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

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