In this world of fear, uncertainty and constant change, we recognize, we experience, we feel the hatred that seems to permeate our every day. The daily news is filled with uncontrolled actions of hate; of vitriol spewing from the mouths of so many; of emotions out of control, propelled by hate to quickly pierce the body or soul of everyone in range. I have been thinking about how to overcome hate with love in a hate filled world.
Today we will be discussing the following:
- How to overcome hate with love in a hate filled world
- What is hate?
- What is anger induced hatred?
- Does jealously cause hate?
- Quotes about hate.
- How to overcome anger through healthy habits and connecting with God
- How living as a victim may produce jealousy and hatred
- How to overcome hate through a relationship with Jesus Christ
- If the world hates you, do not be surprised
- Is the challenge to eradicate hate too overwhelming?
What is Hate?
Hate is a feeling that can cause an emotional response. It is easily spread until an entire group of people may be hyped with the same target of hatred espoused originally by one person. Those individuals caught up in this, who are bereft of a background teaching the benefit of weighing thoughts, listening to two sides, and spiritual grounding, will often jump easily on the bandwagon, thus a “hate run” is born.
What Causes Hate?
Stereotyping, discrimination, and prejudice fuel hate – not love. Hatred may be caused by buried anger, disgust, our own personal history, past relationships, past organizations, feelings, our misunderstood ideas, our beliefs and perhaps identity. Lack of spiritual maturity and an absence of a relationship with the God of Love has prohibited a foundational growth in maturity, understanding and non-judgmentalism. Others have been hurt mentally and physically by overt actions of others, perhaps perpetrators who seem to be living the good life now. It is understandable that these feelings persist and control the victim.
Personally, I have always cringed at the words “I hate you,” whether directed at me or heard as a casual bystander. My parents taught me that hate was a word never to be directed at another person because it was destructive and condemning of another person – a person made in the image of God. That feeling has followed me into adulthood. In my mind it seems to imply complete denial of anything good in the other person.
What is Anger Induced Hatred?
In my professional life, I have connected with children and teens who hate everything. The world has not dealt them the right cards and they blame anyone and everyone for their situation. The tendency is for that anger and hatred to spring forth with very little provocation, always in a destructive manner and sometimes kindling the pent-up emotions into a raging and destructive inferno.
The evening newscast with its agenda of riots, killings, discrimination, injustices, cheating and stealing do nothing to remove the day’s battery of arrows that pierce us. It only builds the level of internal strife and unease. We cannot continue to live like this. Tension becomes strife: this strife may erupt in anger-induced hatred.
Does Jealousy Cause Hate?
Perhaps the cause in part is our lack of acceptance of the fact that we can never be truly equal in terms of innate ability, gifting, happiness, money and love. We are all born with and acquire unequal amounts of these gifts. Lack of one may cause jealously that grows into hatred. We may feel that life has not treated us fairly. That someone else has unearned or undeserved success in one way or another. We may feel unrecognized and unappreciated. Those of inherent low esteem bear a heavier load.
The only answer is to be awakened to the truth of who we are in God’s sight. It is our identity in Christ that gives us stability, confidence and a future. The greatest thing a person can do is to lead one to know Jesus and forgiveness and then help him/her to grow in the new life as a child of God, leaving all the self-condemnation, hate and disgust behind.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only Light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate, only Love can do that.Martin Luther King
How to Overcome Anger Through Healthy Habits and Connecting with God
Granted, we are living in unprecedented times. The life-altering status of COVID-19 has fundamentally changed our schedules, our habits, pleasures and disciplines. We find ourselves connecting to the media more frequently which raises stress, causing us to worry too much. Admittedly, we feel we must listen to the other side of the story. Children, school, jobs, vacations, finances, our elderly family members, eating habits and isolation lend to promoting even more tension.
Tension broils into anger. Anger often causes unfiltered words and action to come forth. Reaction to these emotions culminate into a hatred of the situation, the loss of dreams, the status quo. The prophet Amos wrote, “Hate evil, love good.” It sounds so simple; however, it takes a committed heart, led by the God who is love.
It may be righteous anger but disconnecting from cable news and social media can help relieve the pressures and lower the anger gauge. Taking an invigorating walk relaxes the body and helps to clear the mind. Asking God to fill your mind with “Whatsoever is true, whatsoever is honorable, whatsoever is just, whatsoever is pure, whatsoever is lovely, whatsoever is commendable – if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8
Living as a Victim May Produce Jealousy and Hatred
When life deals us lemons, we don’t always have the where-with-all to make lemonade. We may feel bitter, angry and almost a hatred for the climate or culture of happenings that caused that loss. We initially lash out silently. Finding that we must deal with the situation in order to heal can relieve us from living the life of a victim.
I experienced this when my husband died at a young age. I did not want to be categorized as a “widow”; I did not want to live the life of a victim that was to be pitied. It took facing each feeling, each manner of loss, grief and hurt to work out my anger at the loss, the cause, and then how to allow God to bring me, healthy, again to a productive life of love and service.
Someone penned “you can eat the kale, drink the alkaline water, take the supplements, do Pilates or hit the gym, but if you don’t deal with the stuff going on in your heart and mind, you are still unhealthy.” Through confession, praise and supplication, our hearts can be restored, devoid of hate and anger. This is an act of love of our merciful Lord Jesus.
How to Overcome Hate Through a Relationship with Jesus Christ
Life is Hard – Life is Good, we hear. These are not mutually exclusive. When we have a loving relationship with Jesus the Christ, we know the end of the story. That Hope and Faith sustain us, comforts us, motivates us, and fills us with joy rather than hate. Our healing comes when we help others. When we have gratitude for what remains. When we are no longer consumed by worst things but emboldened by great things.
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.Roman 8:38-39
If the World Hates You, Do Not Be Surprised
If you are a Christian, a Believer in Jesus Christ, you need not be surprised if the world hates you. “The world” in this context means humanity apart from grace. This is the correct place for the word hate. This world will despise and hate your mutual love with Christ, because it will be apparent in your life. Click here to read more about what is grace and what does it mean?
We are to share that love with others. Love conquers hate. This mutual love and respect for others should be a growing flame that is soothing and uplifting rather than troubling and destructive; helpful rather than detrimental; empowering rather than demeaning; loving rather than hatred driven. May we each fill our place in the army of peace rather than the anguish of hate.
Is the Challenge to Eradicate Hate Too Overwhelming?
On our own, this would be a losing battle. But with the mighty God of Creation, we can be a part of this battle. The Lord only requires a pure heart.
And what does the Lord require of you – But to do justice, to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God.Micah 8:6
May peace and love reign in your heart. May anger and hatred be defeated. I pray you will find this peace that passes understanding. Listen to the Free Gift video again.