Jesus says, "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." This is exactly what Jesus himself did, especially when he prayed, "Father forgive them, they don't know what they're doing."
It's not easy to do this. How do we even start?
One place we can begin is right here at the table. We all come to the table as beloved children of God and as sinners in need of the grace of God. If we remember that even those who often make our lives difficult are in exactly the same situation, it can help toward, if not loving them right away, at least not hating them in return.
Let us pray.
God who loves us all, even when we make your work and other's lives difficult, we thank you for Jesus, who taught us how to love even those who hated him. We thank you that your love reaches around, over, and through all the barriers we might have in place. We thank you that, in showing your love for us on the cross, Jesus freed us from the tyranny of sin and death. We thank you for the bread and cup, symbols that remind us of that act of love.
As we take the bread and cup, fill us with the Spirt of love that guided Jesus, that we might share your love with the whole world.
In the name of Jesus, our Risen Lord, Amen.