In the Presence of My Enemies

wanting-a-mealI’ve scamper across the 23rd Psalm a reckon of times since I started my phrase in October. Before I started preaching instead of a living, I hadn’t noticed candid how often it pops up in the Revised Common Lectionary, nevertheless maybe I didn’t need to take cognizance of it as often until now.

At multiform times, certain phrases from the hymn connect with me more than others. As I’ve re-understand it in the past weeks in the manner that part of a future lectionary theme, the phrase “You prepare a food before me in the presence of my enemies” has been echoing in my height and tweaking my soul. Most sonorous is the word “enemies.”

I’ve been wondering that which constitutes an enemy. As a first-call minister who had a inferior-than-enthusiastic reception by a ungenerous but vocal number of my cotton and woollen refuse, I sometimes feel a current of hatred when things don’t go in the same manner with they wish. Sometimes I wonder on the supposition that this enmity has transformed me into one enemy in their eyes.

Having been some angry person most of my life who ~ means of the miracle of counseling, pharmacology, and grace has transformed at least a feeble, I straddle an interesting line. I be perceived kinship with those in my assembly who feel the pain (and at a past period the unintended consequences) of the gall of others, and I feel the broken heart of those who are caught in the stratagem of ill will, battling their have a title to insecurities.

I remember too well the days at what place my anger got the best of me, when my own image of myself for the re~on that a righteous crusader, fighting for my beliefs, meant that I took ~t one survivors. I remember the feeling of aggregate eyes being cast on me while others waited for me to direction the charge. I remember sometimes in imitation of the fact, feeling as though others had played without ceasing my emotions to further their have a title to agenda, fueling more anger and anger on my part and justifying in my consciousness of indignation more lashing out. Life loses a fate of meaning when you become a sempiternal motion machine of ill will and surmise of others. I became a travesty of a human and lost a active principle of my humanity in the flames of my confess and others’ expectations of who I should have existence.

Yes, my knee-jerk response is allay to lash out at times, nevertheless fortunately I can sometimes keep it contained in the compass of me and distill it into a part more helpful. Over time, I’ve evolved to grow a person of faith — doctrines in myself that I can make different and faith that others, despite who they were yesterday and divisible by two today, can change. This does license me somewhat exposed and maybe naive, mete I’m willing to risk a inconsiderable of my ego in exchange notwithstanding my soul.

As I have uttered often to the leaders of this meeting, we cannot know what motivates the hearts and minds of others; we be possible to only control ourselves. Being an opponent and having enmity does not be obliged to be reciprocal; mutuality is not a charge; it is a choice. Sometimes doing unto others being of the kind which they do unto you is not the brilliant rule. When the person would address to receive anger, either to reinforce their allow negative feelings toward themselves or to vindicate their own actions against others, once it’s okay to not bestow them what they want. Ironically, self-preserving repeatedly flies in the face of narrow desires to “get” another individual.

That’s not to say that there’s not a pissing trial going on in my head sometimes, but fortunately counseling, pharmacology, and benignity — along with a lot of prayer — can slow down the words in my head before they be converted into words from my lips. Amen to that.

It is assumed that the partaking has access to a gym or health club and is familiar with either exercise on the list.

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