Most of our relationships have some kind of calculation involved: with colleagues, with friends, even within a family. There is a give and take; an agreement – implicit or explicit – that I will be good to you if you are good to me. Even in marriage, we only make those awe-inspiring vows to someone who makes the same vows to us. And in fact we talk about an ‘exchange’ of vows at a wedding.
The call to love that Jesus makes in the Sermon on the Mount, however, is of a completely different order. To love beyond calculation. To love those who can give us nothing in return. Even to love our enemies – those who may hate us and seek to harm us.
You can listen here to a sermon by Fr Stephen Wang about this radical call to love without limits.