January 8

Matthew 5:43-48“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”‭‭

To be like Christ is to do that which is out of the ordinary. You cannot be a follower of Christ and do that which is normal and ordinary because Christ is beyond normal. To be normal is to love those who love you and do good only unto those who do good unto you. To be like Christ, however is completely different from the norm. Being like Christ is loving those who hate you without cause. It is loving a neighborhood as he stands before you to persecute you. It is giving wholeheartedly to the one who never gives to you when you’re in need. Furthermore being like Christ is professing blessings upon the one who stands in and out of your presence to curse you. 

Although it sounds absurd that is the call you have as a child of God. As a child of God it isn’t enough for you to do what the world does and considers good.  The world considers you to be good when you return favors to those who show you favor and give love to those who gives you love. However you have a far greater purpose. A greater calling that can only be fulfilled with Christ on your side. As are you a child of God you must strive to live beyond the norm. You will do things that the world doesn’t understand.  Love your enemies when it makes no sense to love them. Give when it makes no sense to give and show grace, goodness, and kindness in the most undeserving times. Be perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect. As He loves you even in the darkest moments of your sins so you also must love those around you. Your standard is not this world. Your standard is Christ, and there must be a differentiating factor between you and the world which again is Christ, so live out Christ for the world to see. ‭‭

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