Heed me, O LORD, and listen to what my adversaries say. Must good be repaid with evil that they should dig a pit to take my life? Remember that I stood before you to speak in their behalf, to turn away your wrath from them.
Our good thoughts, words, and works will not always be repaid in kind. Sometimes we can be charitable and merciful toward another person or persons and they will repay us with evil. However, we should not give in to the temptation to sin against them. To see ourselves as better than them, to hate them, or to strike out at them in anger (in thoughts, words, or works). These reactions lessen us and lead us astray. Our source of consolation should reside in God, not in others. We should not seek other people’s congratulations, recognition, or respect. Yes, these are nice to have, but they are not the reason for us to love others. We should be more than willing to have our good deeds dismissed, misinterpreted, or unrequited. True love and mercy are given without counting the cost or expectation of return. They are given because they are the right thing to do.
Have others in our lives repaid our good deeds with evil ones? How can we learn to bear the burden of being hated for doing what is right? How can we learn to love our adversaries even when they give us every reason to turn our backs on them?
O Lord, you love us even when we mistreat you. Help us to love others even when they mistreat us.