43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:43-48
Sometimes our friends and family members can act as our enemies by the things they say and do. We think that because they’re related or are close enough to be called friends that they can’t possibly be enemies. We don’t like it and would rather it’s not the case, but it happens, so then what?
Well, we are to love those people as well, as difficult or impossible as it seems. What then does that look like?
According to Jesus’ words above, it looks like prayer. Unfortunately, human tendency is to go to prayer as a last resort when it should be the first resort. Of course you can’t break through your relative’s thick skull! Only God can. (And by the way, He can break through your thick skull too, so be careful how you pray).
So loving your relatives and friends who mock you, abuse you, or cause you no small amount of ill will means to pray for them and let God do the heavy lifting.
They’ll never know what hit them when you actively practice that type of love.