The call to perfection is united to the life of every single Christian person. We need to work more and more to achieve this perfection. A follower of Christ not only follows but also works and desires to imitate Him who is perfect.
The words of the Gospel are clear. Jesus explains first what he is asking of us, the practice of the law, and later introduces a more spiritual deeper understanding and practice of the law. That is the way Jesus came to fulfill the law. With this new perspective, it is more challenging for the Christians to walk the way of salvation.
When we talk about perfection, we say that “no one is perfect”, and that is correct. Only God is perfect. However, our calling is to be like God, and that is a work of a life time. We never stop working to achieve that perfection.
The constant call to holiness should be understood as a call to perfection. In the book of Leviticus it is written: Be holy, for I, the Lord, your God, am holy. (Lv 19:1)
Christianity in general is identified with love to God and others. But Jesus is calling us in today’s gospel to do more, to love our enemies. This is the path of our perfection. The love we have and express to those around us who love us back is not a challenge and every one can do it. Nevertheless, to love our enemies is not an easy task, but necessary because it makes us similar to God.
Love to our enemies doesn’t start with a perfect love, it starts with a prayer. We pray for them. In this simple act, we not only become a better Christian, but we also start to walk the way of perfection that Jesus is asking us to walk. We also put our enemies in the hands of God, asking the Lord to change their hearts. The reason is simple. We believe that Jesus gave his life also for them.
We cannot be indifferent to this call to perfection, using the excuse that it is difficult or that we don’t like that part of love toward our enemies. The True Christian, cannot avoid this part of the Gospel. If we do, we are not walking in the way of perfection. We forget some times that we are followers of Christ and the measure of our love is “his love”: Love one another as I have loved you!
Is it easy to love our enemies? No! Is it necessary to love our enemies? Yes! Why? Because by loving them, we show that we are not tied by hatred, but love makes us free and better, and maybe, just maybe our love will change their heart.
We are called to work on our spiritual life, and this is one of the things we have to do in order to be similar to our heavenly Father.