I am just a girl who loves Jesus Christ more than I could ever express in words. I am the wife to my husband of twenty-one years and a mommy to six precious children. This blog reveals the presence of God in the midst of my life story.
The Book of Matthew: Morning Moments with God, Day 15
Day 15: Is it Okay to Hate?
Please take time to read the verses for the day.
21 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder,[a] and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister[b][c] will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’[d] is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.
23 “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you,24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.
25 “Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison.26 Truly I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.
I love how from Matthew 5: 21-48, Jesus begins to give practical examples of how He has come to fulfill the Law and how when we read the Law that we should be thinking about the heart or spirit of the Law. The first one being-murder and the seventh commandment of the Ten Commandments. "You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.' But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brothers will be subject to judgment."
Yesterday, I went ahead and read the verses for today. I mulled it over all day. I was thinking about how Jesus' words have played out in my own life. I grew up the youngest of seven children. The sibling two years my senior is my sister. We grew up side by side, sharing a room, and walking to school together. As physically close as we were, we never got along. I don't think I have ever figured out why she hated me so much. My other sisters thought she was jealous of me, but I truly don't know. All I can say is that when we were little she hated me one day, and loved me the next. Then as we grew older she hated me most of the time, except when she needed something from me. Today, well, I have not seen her for ten years. She has cut me out of her life. My sister made decisions to hate me and now I am 'dead' to her- 'murdered,' if you will.
This hatred my sister and eventually my two other sisters had for me, came to the a head when we all fell into a cult. As I tried to break free from the cult and leave, my sisters banned together and came after me. Their hurt and anger for me from past years, was encouraged to grow. They were emboldened to act on their hatred. Within, what felt like minutes, I was thrown to the ground, gagged, and my hands and feet tied with ropes. I was beaten repeatedly for hours. They were each taking part in my murder. What is the heart of the Law? Do not hate, it leads to the murder of relationships and in my case almost physical murder.
"Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,' is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool will be in danger of the fire of hell!" I looked up the word 'Raca,' I thought it meant 'hate,' but it doesn't. It isn't as strong of a word. I believe it means 'idiot.' I was truly surprised, but then the Lord reminded me how my father used to tell me, "You're so stupid, you'll never amount to anything." I spent my high school and college years trying to prove him wrong. I graduated from one of top Catholic high schools in the country, and graduated from my Masters Program with a 4.0 grade point average. I have lived with his voice in the back of my head. Every time I go to try something new, I hear, "You're worthless." I have fought against the lies for years. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I fail. We say to our children that words hurt others, but truly they can do more than hurt, they can be used by the enemy to wage war against that person for the rest of their lives.
23 “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you,24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift." (Matthew 5:23-24) In my heart I have forgiven my family. I have tried to reconcile with them, but they have severed all communication with me these past ten years. Pray with me: Father, the heart of the Law is so much heavier, weightier, than the Law itself. Forgive me for every time I have said, "You fool!" "You idiot!" or when I have said in my heart, "I hate her/him." Father, forgive me and wash me clean. Reconcile me to those I have hurt. Lord, help me to hold my tongue. Help me to use my words to bless and exhort others. And help me to forgive those who have used unkind words towards me. I forgive them in the Name of Jesus! I loose all lies spoken over me, in the name of Jesus! I love you, Lord. Make me clean. Amen.