Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself… – (Leviticus 19:18, NIV)
Forget about the wrong things people do to you. Don’t try to get even. Love your neighbor as yourself… – (Leviticus 19:18, ERV)
You shall not take revenge nor bear any grudge against the sons of your people, but you shall love your neighbor (acquaintance, associate, companion) as yourself… – (Leviticus 19:18, AMP)
Historically, there have been many groups of people that have had reason to hold a grudge for the wrongs done against them, yet for change to occur, the right to revenge had to be released, and love had to prevail. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was a phenomenal example of choosing love, despite his circumstances. Dr. King found ways to bring truth in love, and fight for change through peace. Hate was not his motivation, but rather a heart of love. As a husband, father, minister, leader and spokesperson for civil rights, he let his faith shape the way in which he lived and loved. His words, “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear”, still remind us of the way in which we ought to choose to live. Be it an acquaintance, an associate, or a companion, may we choose to stick with love; for it is the very way in which we are called to live.
The only true way,
To find peace at last;
Is to stick with love,
Let go of the past.
When we choose forgive,
Our hearts are set free;
The burden of hate,
Is far too heavy.
May we stick with love,
And choose to redeem;
Value all people,
And honor the dream.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the men and women who have chosen to rise up and stick with love, despite the barriers and difficulties that have stood before them. Thank You that when we choose love, You move mightily among us. Forgive us for the times that we have held grudges rather than chosen love. Teach us to trust You more, so that we would stick with love, and not allow the weight of hate to destroy that which You intend for good. Show us how to love every acquaintance, associate and companion as You would have us love ourselves. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. May your peace prevail, and love win where hate has tried to reign. Be glorified O God, as we choose love again and again, knowing that You will use every decision of love to bring the dream to further fulfillment. Amen.
They will celebrate Your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of Your righteousness. – Psalm 145:7