It hurts to be let down by our friends but it hurts even more if they do so believing they are right.

No sooner were the words out of his mouth than a crowd showed up, Judas, the one from the Twelve, in the lead. He came right up to Jesus to kiss him. Jesus said, “Judas, you would betray the Son of Man with a kiss?” When those with him saw what was happening, they said, “Master, shall we fight?” One of them took a swing at the Chief Priest’s servant and cut off his right ear. Jesus said, “Let them be. Even in this.” Then, touching the servant’s ear, he healed him. Luke 22:47-51 (The Message)

Although Judas’ kiss gets most attention from this passage Jesus was equally let down by those who remained loyal to him. Jesus never wanted those who followed him to physically fight others to defend him. Jesus loved his enemies as much as he loved his friends. Loving those who hate you is as hard as forgiving friends that betray you but Jesus does both. In our human frailty we are more inclined to love those who do us no wrong but Jesus wants us to heal all others by our words and our actions. Jesus said, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.” Matthew 5:11 (The NIV translation)

Jesus, Prince of peace and Lord of life, help me to follow your way and be like you in loving enemies and forgiving friends. Let your life in me give the strength to do what you would do and be as you would be. Amen.

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