Daily Reflection
From a Creighton Student's Perspective

February 16th, 2008

Teresa Bolas

Junior, Social Work Major

Dt 26:16-19
Ps 119:1-2, 4-5, 7-8
Mt 5:43-48

“You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you.” Mt 5:43-44

Love our enemies? Pray for those who persecute us? How often do we truly follow this fundamental Christian belief? Christian teachings have been passed on for thousands of years, yet we are still not at a point where we can proudly proclaim that we are true followers of this command. When we find people who persistently practice peace and genuinely care for the well-being of all people, we call them saints. We hold these people in high esteem because it is so difficult to let go of hostile attitudes. However, this is the type of behavior we are all called to exhibit. It is challenging, but Jesus expects us to be as perfect as his own father. While it seems unrealistic, he would not insist this of us if he knew we could not handle this demand.

Lent is an opportune time in our liturgical year to hear this gospel because Lent is a dark time for us. We recall the persecution of Jesus and the suffering he endured for our salvation. He faced many enemies and persecutors without harboring feelings of hate; he underwent physical violence and public ridicule without ever attempting to retaliate. In our world today, hatred occurs all around us as witnessed through acts of violence, discrimination, and competition in our capitalist, democratic society, and we immediately call for “justice” via retaliation. Impulsive reactions do not suffice to end hatred; instead, they contribute to its intensity. We must search for new methods of dealing with the problems we face. Turning to love and prayer in the midst of suffering and hatred is the solution we need, no matter how idealistic or impractical they seem. Jesus directly calls us to these extraordinary ideas; if we want to be followers, love and prayer are the only way to go about this path.

Let Your Friends Know About This Reflection By Sending Them An E-mail


Collaborative Ministry Office Guestbook