Purify my heart

            You have heard that it was said,
                  “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.”
          But I say to you, if anyone strikes you on the right cheek,
                  turn the other also.
         You have heard that it was said,
                  “You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.”
         But I say to you, love your enemies
                  and pray for those who persecute you.
         Be perfectly loving
,                   as your heavenly Abba is perfectly loving.

                           —from Matthew 5.38-48

God, fill me with light,
that I may resist evil not with anger but with light.
Keep me mindful that I am your salt,
not needing to prove my saltiness,
but only to be myself, even in the face of evil.
Give me light even to love my enemy,
salt to turn the other cheek.
Help me resist evil and injustice
as one who is poor in spirit, gentle,
mourning, and hungering for justice.
Help me show mercy as you show mercy.
Purify my heart of all but love,
that I may be purely loving as you.
Give me strength and perseverance
to be a peacemaker despite persecution.
When an evildoer strikes me give me grace
with meekness and purity of heart
to turn the other cheek,
and so with love to stand in their way.
For nothing but the cross will undo evil.
Help me to bear it, for the sake of the world.

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