Matthew 5:43-45 (NIV) “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 sons 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.

I have to be honest. Sometimes I really don’t like what is written in the Bible. Above is a sample of my less favorable scriptures. I know, I know, it sounds so bad but at least it’s honest.

But what I’m reminded about Scriptures that I don’t like is simply this: The call to follow Jesus is not a call to make your life better. It is not a call to comfort and convenience. A lot of what Jesus says does NOT jive with our natural instincts or popular philosophies.

Following Jesus is SELF denial. It is saying no to those natural instincts and yes to God’s Spirit that helps you choose Godly instincts.

Is there someone who hates you?

Is there an enemy to pray for?

Is there someone to forgive who’s wronged you?

Or the better question could be: Is there something you’ve done because you are a Christ follower that hasn’t jived with your natural instincts?