Love Your Enemies?

Author: Gretchen Carlson — Host: Andrew StevensPosted on: September 16, 2020

Unlocked: Daily Devotions for Teens
Love Your Enemies?

Ordinary students—like me—kept to themselves in order to avoid fists or knives. Paralyzed by fear, teachers ignored bullying because it was dangerous to interfere. Only blood and severe violence forced school administrators to act. Why was I singled out? I didn’t know. For some reason, the gang leader hated me, and her minions made my life miserable. At first, I ignored the elbow in the ribs in the hallway or a basketball slammed against the back of my head in the gym. The badgering escalated because silence conveyed weakness. My parents had their own problems. I couldn’t share mine. I wasn’t a fighter, and neither were my friends. I had no backup. At church, the youth pastor challenged us to read the Bible and trust God. Unconvinced that God was more than a distant-energy-cosmic-thing, I didn’t think much of Him. However, I started to read Matthew, and when I read Jesus’ words to love your enemies, I laughed. Love your enemies? Pray for those who persecute you? But I couldn’t shake off the idea and decided to try it. I bought a glittery card with a poem about friendship. My stomach churned so hard I thought I’d vomit when I handed the card to the gang leader and ran away. She never said one word to me. In fact, I barely saw her the rest of the semester, but the threats stopped. I was no longer pushed, shoved, or spit on. She called off the gang. It was a miracle. It was the first time I saw God working in my life, the first time I saw the power of His Word. My steps toward faith and obedience were tiny, but nothing is too small or ordinary for God. • Gretchen Carlson • God did a miracle in today’s true story based on the author’s experience. But, every bullying situation is different, so if you are being bullied, speak to a trusted parent, teacher, or counselor to help you figure out what the appropriate steps are in your situation. • Jesus loved us even while we were still His enemies (Romans 5:8). If you know Him, He lives in you and empowers you to love others with that same love. How does that affect the way you view people who hurt you? After you have talked with a trusted adult about your situation and figured out the appropriate steps, talk about ways you can love your enemies in your situation. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! Matthew 5:44 (NLT)


Read Verses:

Matthew 5:43-48