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Love Your Enemies

by Helen M. Johnson

Arrows dipped in poison flew
From the fatal bow;
And they pierced my bosom through,
And they laid me low.

Every nerve to anguish strung,
In distress I cried:
And the waste around me rung,
But no voice replied.

"Cruel was the hand," I said,
"That could draw the bow:
Curses rest upon the head
Of my heartless foe!"

Turning straightway at the sound,
In the tangled wood,
Pale, and bearing many a wound,
There a stranger stood.

Mournfully on me he gazed,
Not a word he said:
But one hand the stranger raised,
And I saw it bled.

Blood was flowing from his side
And his thorn-pierced brow;
"Who has wounded thee?" I cried,
And he answered, "Thou!"

Then I knew the Stranger well,
And with sobs and tears
Prostrate at his feet I fell,
But he soothed my fears.

"Thou hast wounded me, but live,—
And my blessing take:
Henceforth wilt thou not forgive
Freely for my sake?"

Resting in his fond embrace,
Eased of every woe,—
Then I said, with smiling face,
"Jesus, bless my foe!"

27But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, 28Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you. 

– Luke 6:27-28

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