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We may not have to turn our lives totally around – like an Opposites Day skit – however there is still so much we can do.
Reference: v.43-44 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” (NIV Bible)
Explore: There use to be a show on TV called ‘You Can’t Do That On Television’ (this may really highlight my age!). It was like a skit show for kids. The cast was mainly teenagers and they all had lots of different characters they’d play in different scenarios. There was lots of slap-stick humour and every episode someone got slimed or drenched with water. Every now and again they would have a skit that seemed really out of place like the grumpy father would be really kind to his kids or the bad chef would cook something delicious. Just when you thought the character had changed their stripes someone would say ‘Hold on, it must be Opposites Day’ and you would realise it was all an act.
In this passage often titled The Sermon on the Mount it almost seems like Jesus is having an Opposites Day. He is turning the norms of the world on its head. While the crowds had always thought one way, Jesus was turning them towards the other way of living.
Application: While I try to live my life according to what Jesus would want, I know that I often fall short. We may not have to turn our lives totally around – like an Opposites Day skit – however there is still so much we can do. I may feel generous for sponsoring a child and yet when I hear of the devastation in Burma I am confronted with how much I have and how much more I can give. It is a lifetime’s work to live according to Jesus’ instruction, and while it may not get us wealth or power in this life we know that we will be building up our heavenly treasure.
Prayer: Lord, so often I get things wrong. Help me to be open to hear your redirection and willing to change my course. Amen.