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Saturday, February 27, 2021

You're not obliged to 'like' your enemies says Fr. Ebido - ITREALMS

Lenten Sermon@ITREALMS ... making leadership SENSE with digital news!
Saturday, First Week of Lent B (February 27/2021) 

Your Daily BlessingMay the Lord open your heart to love like He does! Amen.

Read Deut. 26:16-19; Matt 5:43-48; pray Ps 119:1-16.


NARRATION: We all have experienced the inner struggle to relate well with some people around us but each time we fall short. There are people we just don’t seem to go along with. For those seeking to get married, we are told to see if they are ‘compatible’.

In religious life (priests/monks/nuns) when two people are assigned to work together, efforts are made to ensure they not ‘incompatible.’


To say two people are incompatible does not mean any of the partners is a bad person. At worst it may be because of personality differences or consistent differences in opinion or worldview (in the way each ‘sees’ and ‘interprets’ life.

The direct implication is that incompatible people may hardly develop real friendship because their incompatibility creates reasons for constant friction and misunderstanding, and therefore growing a dislike for each other. When you force it, dislike may develop into hatred.

Many of us don’t relate well with some of our siblings or colleagues, school mates for this very reason. While you may never ‘like’ such people, but you can (and in fact obliged to) love them. Why? Because ‘love’ (agape) has nothing to do with liking the other but deciding to do good to him/her always. That is why we say “love is a decision” you take to do good to the other person no matter what.

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The above explains how it is possible to “love your enemies” as a law of the new covenant. Once you bracket the emotion of liking, you will see it becomes easier to do good not only to that difficult brother/sister but even to your enemies. 

This reflection is to help people struggling with doing good to their brothers/sisters or former ‘friends’ who have offended or hurt them deeply. You may never like these people again, but you can still love them.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, sometimes it is so difficult to see how I can love my ‘enemies’ with all the hurt I feel in my heart! Please help me first to forgive them, and grant me the grace to still do good to them despite everything. I this way, I will be loving them like you. Amen.

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