My problem is that I really think Jesus meant what He said. This isn't usually a problem on things that I like or view as easy (though often the easy things aren't that easy afterall). The problem comes with things that I don't like or are really dificult to do. Then it would be so much easier if Jesus just didn't really mean what He said. Today is an example of such a situation. You see Jesus said:
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:43-45a
Sounds really nice and sweet and it usually is such. This command is usually something that I can easily follow. I tend to be a forgiving guy.
Then there are days like today and I remember this means people like Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev who planned and set off the bombs at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. I have a really difficult time wrapping my mind around acting in loving manners to Dzhokar, who appears to be finally in custody, and his brother who is now dead. How do I respond in love to someone who killed and hurt innocent people in a terrible act of terror? How do I love these guys who have struck fear in the heart of an entire city? Selfishly, as a runner how do I respond in love to someone who has done this to an event I love? Jesus's love was and is specific and sacrificial. He practiced what He preached. He loved those who were literally hurting Him and He still does. So how do I love these guys who have done things that are incrediblly evil?
It would be so much easier if Jesus simply didn't mean some of the things He said. But He did mean them. So how do I, as followers of Jesus Christ, seek justice (which I believe we should) while still responding in love? What does this love look like? I am sure it doesn't look like hate.