The other day I offered to buy my seven year old brother a movie at blockbuster. The problem was that when we got there, he went straight to the video game section. "Collin! Can I get a video game instead?" was his question. I promptly suggested that we check the videos first since they were cheaper. After looking through the videos and finding nothing that he wanted, he walked back to the video game section determined to get a video game. I looked at him and told him that because I love him, I was going to get him the video game that he wanted.
He looked at me and smiled and came over and gave me a big hug. What I did for him was not done in order to receive something back from him, but he looked me in the eyes and said, "Collin, because you are buying me this game, I'm going to give you a five minute massage!" I looked at him, grabbed him on the shoulders and replied, "The hugs you give me, and the love you show are more than enough."
In Luke chapter six, verses twenty seven through thirty six, we read of many commandments of how we should treat others and how we should aim for a higher standard than secular people. It talks about how we are to do for others without expecting anything in return, but what about the way we treat enemies? This too is touched upon in this passage.
Luke 6:27-36 says:
But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.
If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even "sinners" love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even "sinners" do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even "sinners" lend to "sinners," expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because He is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
What I love about this passage is the fact that it shows that as Christians we are to meet a higher standard than those who aren't. We are to be kind to everyone whether or not they are kind to us, we are to love those who don't necessarily love us, and we are to be generous to others without expecting repayment. We must "love [our] enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back."
At times, these high expectations are tough to meet and may feel like a waste, but look at what the passage says towards the end. When we strive to do these things, our "reward will be great"! As you go throughout your day, remember to go above and beyond the expected behavior of this world. Even "sinners" do that; show others that because you have God in you, you aim for a higher standard.