Have you ever noticed how hard it is to love? I was pondering on this as today’s readings is about “loving our neighbor as we love ourselves.”
In these ponderings I realized something.
Let someone go against me, hurt my feelings, say something nasty, do something nasty and as quick as they do, emotions begin to rise.
Emotions such as anger, wanting a herd of elephants to come upon them, wanting vengeance, wanting them to get what they deserve for doing that to me.
Within a moment all of these emotions and more, will rise up within myself. I do not will them or want them. They are just there.
That goes to show me what is truly hidden in the “nature of man.”
Then there is love. The one thing we are called to do, and taught how to do by our Lord Jesus.
The one emotion, we have to actually “will” ourselves to have.
We think it comes so naturally, but let someone cross us and it will fly out the door as quickly as our anger will come in.
As I look at this picture of Christ and the Pharisees, I can only imagine what He was going through?
There is one Man, against many.
Can you imagine Him trying to get a word in edge wise? (Kind of makes me understand why Jesus endured so much in silence.)
Can you imagine all the snarls, accusations, and persecution being screamed at Him, by so many?
This was done over, over, and over to Him.
Jesus always did one thing.
He loved their souls more than He hated the evil coming out of them. He loved those souls so much, He died for them.
I think that is the example He wanted us to follow.
Love that soul!
Did Jesus have to “will Himself to love these people?”
I don’t think He did.
I think He was the One Man on earth, to which this was His natural emotion.
It is hard to love the unlovable. It is hard to even want one good thing to happen to them.
We do have the power through Jesus, to cast aside all the emotions which are so natural to our human nature.
We do have the power through Jesus, to will ourselves to love.
Lord, love is not a natural emotion for me. I try to make it be the only emotion I have for others, but anger and resentment will rise within me in a moment’s notice, when I am hurt.
When this happens I realize who I truly am, without You.
Help me Lord, to realize I am the most undeserving of Your Love.
Help me to realize in spite of this, You choose to love me.
In remembering this, may I will myself to love others, as You love me.
“For who is innocent, Lord?”
“Only You know who is deserving.” +
St. Paul said, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Love does no evil to the neighbor; hence, love is the fulfillment of the law.”
God Bless, SR
Image by James Tissot
Quotes taken from Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden