A question grabs my soul and refuses to let go: How do we love those who don’t love us? Like hugging a prickly porcupine there’s no easy way to do it. It’s going to hurt. It would be much easier to avoid the barbed beast than embrace its unembraceable self. Who wants to be kind to one who speaks unkindly about us? Who wants to keep no record of wrong doing with one who insists on keeping us in a box? Who wants to stop judging one who judges us unfairly? Not me. But we follow a Lord who has this thing about loving the unlovable. We can ask Peter, the one with foot in mouth disease. Or Mary Magdalene, the one with seven demons . Or Zacchaeus, the one who stole hard- earned wages. Or the Roman soldier who drove nails into His hands. They will all tell us the same thing. “I don’t know why He loves me, but He does. And because He does, I’m different.” That’s why being a Christian isn’t for wimps. It takes guts to grab a pointy porcupine. Our Lord and Savior says to you and me, “Surround the ‘enemy’s’ presence with peace. Refuse to fight spike to spike. When you see them, see Me. I’m there, believe it or not. I created them in my image. Find Me in their face. Keep looking. Don’t give up. Call on Me. I will help you see what I see, and I will help them be who I made them to be.” Lord God, heal our hurt hearts. Free us from attaching strings and expecting things. Give us renewed courage to reengage in the battle to love as You love. We adore You, O Christ, now and forever. Amen.