How can I love you if I really hate you!? Grrr....

Philippines
February 21, 2011 9:02pm CST
I guess I still am a Christian in progress. Why? Because it is difficult for me to follow the command of our Lord "Love your enemies..." Gosh! How can I? That enemy borrowed money from me and never paid me back... That enemy abused the child of my friend, and he has no remorse at all... That enemy took lives of my people, in every heinous way you can imagine... Etcetera... How can I love him? Advice, anyone?
6 people like this
19 responses
@dorannmwin (36608)
• United States
25 Feb 11
For me, the thing that I have found to be key in my life is forgiveness. I'm able to forgive other people for the fact that they've done me wrong. However, it doesn't matter what they've done to me, I find it to be impossible for me to be able to forget about what they've done. I am able to love all people for the fact that they are human beings. However, there are people that I can't let into my life because of the fact that they've wronged me or my loved ones.
2 people like this
@Sanitary (3969)
• Singapore
23 Feb 11
It's not easy to be a good man, what's more, god or even good followers. In the case of religions, how many followers do actually understand the meaning behind faith? HOw many believers actually kill or beat up others just to prove that their religion is the mightiest? There are people who are able to forgive their enemies, but forgiving does not mean forgetting. While forgetting does not mean forgiving either.
2 people like this
• United States
22 Feb 11
I understand where you're coming from but we don't have to love them but we can respect them. Everybody is human in eyes God's eyes whether good or bad. We have to learn to tolerate everybody for who they are. You have to learn to be calm when it comes to dealing with certain type of people. When you get angry towards your enemies you're adding fuel to their fire. Anger ignites the people you hate to do more things that causes you to hate them even more. Hate isn't a good feeling, it stirs up all these other emotions that drifts you further away from happiness. For the people you hate ignore them and don't give them one inch of your time. Instead of focusing on the people you hate maybe you should focus on the people you love.
2 people like this
• United States
22 Feb 11
Let me take a stab at this... Love is not really a warm fuzzy emotional feeling. Love is more of a choice. For instance, the bible says that no man hates himself. Every man feeds himself in order to live. I sometimes feel extreme anger and disgust towards myself, yet I make the choice to keep from starving and dying from dehydration. Also, part of loving someone is at some point you have to take that person aside if he or she is slipping and let that person know where he is wrong. Many people give the impression that love is putting your mouth constantly on someone else's... and it is not. Scripture does talk about how a flattering tongue isn't really good for a person (I believe it is in Proverbs).
2 people like this
@rameshchow (5284)
• India
22 Feb 11
Praying gives us patience. Yes, the lord Jesus gives us the great habbit of excusing. But, you have a right to ask them. You are leaving them freely, although you have right to throw them into prison.
2 people like this
@buenavida (7423)
• Sweden
22 Feb 11
Hi, eileen What an interesting question! How indeed can we love our enemies, especially those who have hurt us or someone we love?? First we might need to go to the original language, Greek. What actually did Jesus say? Did he mean that we should be friends with our enemies? The Greek text uses the word "philía" for friendship. But Jesus din´t use this word when he taught about loving our enemies. We don´t need to be friends with our enemies. Actually the Bible warns for bad company. In this case Jesus used the word "agápe" and it is different. It is love built on principles, which can mean that we know that people can change and become persons who really love others. We can pray that if it is possible, God will open their heart and they will follow God´s laws instead of selfish behavior. We can also pray, that God will send us someone who can teach you about Him, so that we get more familiar with His personality. Many religions teach that God is cruel and tortures his children if they don´t behave well. How could he do that, and at the same time let His son teach about loving our enemies? I think the right understanding of the original text can help us to accept and follow this teaching of love. Many of those who have done awful things have changed completely. If they repent and change, it was really wort the effort to pray for them. Wish you well..
@buenavida (7423)
• Sweden
25 Feb 11
Thanks for the BR award! I am happy that you appreciated the thoughts! I was taught this many years ago and it has helped me to keep hoping that those who cannot behave well now, maybe can learn to do it later. We do ourselves a favor by not hating anyone but leaving the sake to God who can read human hearts!!
1 person likes this
@blue65packer (11835)
• United States
22 Feb 11
Then don't love them! I am not Catholic but grew up Lutheran. I still call myself Christian but a lot of stuff I learned growing up I don't follow anymore. I do not love my enemies! I will not forgive my enemies! I will not pray for them! Why should I? They did me wrong! Some don't realize it and never will! Some know they did it and never will admit to it! It makes mu life better! Just forget the guy that is your enemy! He doesn't deserve to be loved!
@visavis (5945)
• Philippines
22 Feb 11
Sorry my friend but your stand being Christian is not applicable because love your enemies are one of God command for us. Bible said love your neighbor as you love your self, who is your neighbors (your friends, family and ENEMIES). It is hard but try to love them... see you around
1 person likes this
@dainy1313 (2354)
• Leon, Mexico
25 Feb 11
Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww Eileenleyva! I love your post, I´m trying to be Christian since I was 22...(I´m 38) it´s hard enough!!! My God!!! I can´t explain it!! I´d love to... but is just a very deep experience. I know for sure God exists... but why he left us a such difficult way to follow him... I don´t know... I just can tell you I´ve seen miracles... in dessert, I´ve seen miracles... I´ll pray for you daily, as I use to pray. And let´s continue on the highway of life ... Blessings!... Dainy
1 person likes this
@ElicBxn (59916)
• United States
23 Feb 11
Just because you are commanded to "love your enemies" doesn't mean that you condone their bad behavior. And I really believe that the first example is probably the best example of the kind of "enemy" that the commandment is addressing. Someone borrows money and doesn't pay it back. Lesson learned, don't lend to that person again. The latter person isn't YOUR personal enemy, but its still a case of "love the person, hate the sin". Happily, you never have to MEET the person!
1 person likes this
• Mexico
22 Feb 11
Hi eileen leyva: I understand that this is one of the hardest part of being a Christian. How to love someone that is actually your enemy and that has given you pain. There's a reason to love these evil persons: because they have a soul and they don't actually know that they'll be condemn for their actions. They don't know or don't accept God grace. We should feel sorry for them, not hate them. Love don't mean that you agree with their actions or that you have to be with them if they're hurting you or that you can't seek for justice. I'd pray for them and I'll try to be far away from them. ALVARO
1 person likes this
@zills66 (1421)
• Saudi Arabia
22 Feb 11
To love an enemy is apparently imposible to do! make a counterattack and return like for like now! confess and repent later! "Do the work in God's Mercy"
1 person likes this
@sais06 (1288)
• Philippines
22 Feb 11
Hi eileenleyva! I also have a discussion before which is similar to yours. Anyway I just want to share what I've learned that it starts from forgiveness. Even those who are close to us will be difficult for us to love if we can't forgive them. Forgiveness frees us from the hurts and pains that the person has brought us. It helps us forget and heal. Wounds created in our life are very much difficult to heal than the physical wounds. It will take some time before that wound will close. When that time comes we must make sure that we won't scratch the scar again. I know it still difficult and even I cannot assure you that I'll be able to do this all the time. Just take time to forgive and have patience.
1 person likes this
@sy0712 (156)
• China
22 Feb 11
Read your article,I feel very sad,I know that you are a kind person,and you don't want to hate someone,even if they do to you so cruel of things,you also don't know whether you should hate them,I really admire you,your kindness let us admit defeat!
@visavis (5945)
• Philippines
22 Feb 11
Actually my friend even me I cannot assure you that I can love such people. But the question is how we can obey God command particularly love our enemies. I remember a passage from the bible said - love your neighbor as you love yourself. Then do I love myself (or I just think that I love myself) because if I love myself I can love also my neighbor (right?) or others. In that sense all questions are coming back to us (ourself). Then I'm checked myself, whose my greatest enemies - people around me, evil or satan and MYSELF, then the end result MYSELF is my greatest enemy because very hard to teach, to learn, to give and to forgive... Do I give you a parallel thought about your question? see you around
@eurekafemme (5881)
• Philippines
22 Feb 11
Hi, Eileen.:) Yup, you are correct. How can you love someone who is an animal.. It is impossible! And only God has the power to do so, but as humans, it is like next to impossible. But , I guess, what this phrase means is that even if you hate that person, no matter how bad he has been and if he is trying to make amends,repent and ask forgiveness, we should not close our doors to that person, give him the second chance he needs. Forgiveness is a way of showing compassion and love, isn't it? Also, pray for that person to to see the light and comes back to God . This is also another way of showing our love. Remember the power of prayer? Praying and hoping for someone to change for the better is an indication of love. So love your enemy when he needs your love, even if he seems not worthy of it.
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Feb 11
Well, I hear that a lot as well, but how I see it is, right now, you can be as mad at them as you want to, but eventually, you will learn to forgive them. It takes time. For years, I was angry at my step-father for what he put my brother and me through, but I had to learn to forgive him. It does not mean that I have forgotten what he has done to us, but I have learned that he is who he is and he will never change. Again, you can be as mad as you want to right now, but eventually, in time, you will come to forgive him. Give it time. My other advice, keep him out of your life for a long time if you have to. Move away from him if you can. Get a restraining order if it is that bad. Keep him away from you until you can learn to handle what he has done. Don't give him anything. Keep him away from you and your loved ones until things settle down.
@GardenGerty (87671)
• Marion, Kansas
22 Feb 11
All of this from one enemy? I know it is hard. Pray, and pray some more. That sounds like a simple and unconsidered answer, but we cannot be Christian in our own power, but we need the Power of God to forgive. God will also be sure to give the enemy retribution.
@SHAMRACK (8350)
• India
22 Feb 11
Dear friend, If you just read "Gita" the Hindu religion book, there it is clearly given how to deal with your enemies and how to deal with someone you hate. Please don't misjudge me as popularizing or upholding this religion. But here when the Arjun hesitates to go with war on his teachers and relatives the chariot rider lord Krishna explains how to details those obstacles in life. One main part that is popular it like this "What ever had happened is for good, whatever is happening is also for good and whatever is going to happen is also for good".........
• Philippines
22 Feb 11
Well sister, you don't always have to have no feeling of anger toward these people. But of course having no anger at them is definitely BEST! You could always pray for them, these people need our prayers as much as beggars need alms. Pray that they may repent. The evil that they do could give them more pain than their giving us. God is just, no evil will go unpunished. Let us pray for them, let's take up our own cross for their sake. The pain that they give us is nothing compared to the pain of eternal damnation, we wouldn't want them to suffer that wouldn't we? Tell a good priest about this in confession and receive our Lord's body worthily. Countless souls would benefit from this and we would someday need these souls' help too. God bless you.