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Examiner
  • Diane Mack: Bible gives wise counsel on dealing with enemies

  • Last October, I was listening to the LDS church conference and heard several speakers talk about kindness. Hearing the admonition to be kind, prompted me to think about, and measure, how I was doing with kindness.

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  • Last October, I was listening to the LDS church conference and heard several speakers talk about kindness. Hearing the admonition to be kind, prompted me to think about, and measure, how I was doing with kindness.
    I believe it is easy to be kind to most people. Then again, some days, we meet people, who are very difficult.
    Lets take this a degree farther.
    What would our world be like if we followed the counsel in Matthew chapter 5, verse 44?
    But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecuteyou.
    Have you ever put this scripture to the test?
    Think about one person who is difficult. Have you ever gone out of your way to be kind, or dropped them a card or a treat?
    From Merriam-Webster.com, an enemy is defined as one that is antagonistic to another, one who seeks to injure another, something that is harmful or deadly, and/or a military adversary or hostile force.
    I cannot envision myself taking a plate of cookies to someone who is an enemy. In all fairness, sometimes we are the last to know that someone is an enemy or doesnt like us.
    My daughter Kelsey is a great example to me, of a person who loves everyone. In fact, when she thinks she may have said, or done something wrong, she immediately states that she is sorry.
    Recently, I read a blog post written by Leo Babauta and I liked his advice. This is a shortened version of his writing, Why Should I Love My Enemy?
    You'll be happier. Removing this anger from yourself is a positive thing, and it will make you happier overall.
    You could change that person's life. Your enemy is a human being, and its very possible that your hatred of that person is a source of grief, tension, or hatred in them . . . hurting another person is always a bad thing. Making them happier is a good thing.
    You could make a friend. One of the most powerful effects of learning to love your enemy is that your enemy can become your friend.
    You set a better example for others. Our actions set an example for other people in our lives. If you have children . . . teaching them to overcome that anger and hate, to make up with an enemy, and to love there is no better example in life.
    It's better for society. This one seems obvious to me, but . . . if we can overcome that hatred, and learn to love our neighbor and our enemy, society is better off in so many ways.
    Page 2 of 2 - It's a test of you as a person. I like to think of myself as a good person, but how good am I, if I am just loving to my family and friends? We need to . . . turn hatred or resentment, into feelings of love.
    I believe there is a great benefit to loving an enemy. I tried it.
    It was a blessing.
    I found peace.
    Diane Mack is coordinator of Putting Families First, Jackson Countys Family Week Foundation. Email her at jacksoncountyfamilyweek@yahoo.com or visit www.jacksoncountyfamilyweek.org.
     
     

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