"But I say to you, love your enemies. Pray for those who hurt you." (NCV)
What is God saying?
We are to love and pray for the people we least want to love and pray for.
What is God saying to us today?
This might be the most difficult of Jesus' teaching for Christians to follow, as it seemingly goes against every natural impulse we have. We might know that this is what we are supposed to do, but actually doing it in our daily lives is another story! It's hard to do on a global level. When is the last time any of us legitimately prayed for terrorists (ISIS, KKK, etc.), much less been "accused" of loving them? And it's even more difficult on a personal level. Can we really love the person in our office who is trying to get us fired? What about the bully at school? How about the family member who sexually assaulted us? Or the bigot down the street who won't just leave us alone? We might even dismiss this as God asking the impossible of us. But, we must remember that this is exactly what He did for us! This is not a metaphorical request, as much as we might wish it was. This is a literal command for God's followers to love ALL of humanity, just as He does.
What is God inviting us to do?
Do you find it difficult to even think about loving your enemy? God invites us to do the impossible by letting Him change our hearts and minds. He knows He this is a hard teaching, but we don't have to do it under our own power. If we let Him, He will do this impossible thing through us - after all the cross already proved how much He loved His enemies!