Good morning from the Monfort retreat centre in England’s Southampton.
Here is a beautiful statue of Saint Monfort offering his heart to Mary!
His priesthood really took-off so to speak after this consecration which is why he went about recommending it to everyone he met!
You may have already heard of Saint Monfort’s 33 day consecration to Our Lady! If not, perhaps something to do for 33 days of lent!!
Anyway that aside I thought to write about loving our enemies as in today’s gospel!
Before looking at what this means, let’s look at what it doesn’t mean!
Suppose Satan, our greatest enemy, knocks on your door and says:
Your prayers are annoying me, could you keep them down.
I don’t like when you warn people about me, please stop!
Going to confession makes me cry, please don’t go anymore!
I don’t like Jesus or Mary so if you could not mention them and take down those horrible crosses that you put everywhere….
However, what I do like is chaos, disorder, sex, drugs, alcohol and so if you wouldn’t mind can you kindly put these things on your televisions and magazines instead”!!
Sadly one could think of our catholic church and world today and think that something like that actually did happen some years ago!!
So if loving our enemies doesn’t mean obeying our enemies them then what does it mean?!
Jesus is pretty clear when He asks us to pray for our enemies and while there is no point in praying for Satan who is a lost cause there is every reason to pray for the conversion of hurt and wounded human beings who are very often unknown complices of Satan’s plans!
The best way to pray for our enemies is to imagine ourselves in their shoes!!
(Fortunately these shoes are from my friend rather than enemy!).
To help you pray for your enemy ask yourself some questions:
- What type of upbringing did they have?
- What may have gone wrong in their lives?
- What did I do in my life before I met Jesus?
- How does Jesus see them?
This is to soften your heart and to kindle the mercy of God in your heart for them!
Be careful not to fall into the trap of judging less pride gets a hold of you!
Next issue will be dealing with them!
How do I love my enemy and yet at the same time be firm and not compromise who I am?
The truth is that you will not please everyone! The trick is to be at peace in your heart and to say what you have to say with peace, love and justice.
Your enemy will probably not be happy but you can’t do anything about that but you can at least minimize his/ her unhappiness by the way you act and deal with the situations!
It’s always good to explain your decision clearly and firmly and at the same time leave a door open for reconciliation if your enemy should chose to accept it!
You may open it but only he can walk through it!!
And finally be prepared for it not to work and for your enemy to grow even more bitter. We see this today in so many cases and sadly it is true that some souls refuse grace right up to their death and even choose freely to go to hell. Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that but let’s not fool ourselves either!
Pray for them anyway and leave the results to God!
A very powerful prayer for the conversion of hearts is the divine mercy! Millions of situations have been transformed through this chaplet.
And so today, placing our hearts and hands in those of Mary our mother like Saint Monfort let us once again commit to praying for our enemies, forgiving them for how they have hurt us and trusting in the mercy and grace of Jesus for the results!!
Have a great day!
P.S. Pray for me at 3pm as I’ll be giving a little sharing to the group!