Dear God: How did you change this hatred into love?

Dear God,

I hated them & I’m not exaggerating. I hated them because they hurt people that I love, they broke people who were once whole, and so I hated them because their mischief reached the people that mattered the most to me.

I hated them because I had heard stories of their actions and I had no reason to disbelieve them.

Yet here I am years later, and those same people I hated are the same ones I beg you to increase. Now they are the people that I ask you to bless their progeny, their relationships, their wealth, their efforts, & to make their homes a place of rest and tranquility.

Lord, I swear that as tears stream down my face and create a channel to my Heart, that inside this puny heart of mine is a place for the people I once hated, people you’ve now caused me to love.

And I can’t believe I’m saying this after all these years. After I would have done anything to ruin them, to inflict pain on them, & to cause them to hurt the same way they caused me to hurt.

Now I’d do anything to sit with them, to eat with them, to pray with them, to walk into Paradise behind them.

How is it that years later you have caused the same people that I hated to be the doors through which opportunities would be open to me? The same people that I thought were the wretched of the Earth became those that I witnessed the greatest transformations within, or maybe it wasn’t them that transformed, maybe it was me.

Maybe I was the wretch that assumed I was free of mistake and sin and then you sent those people to show me the realities of my heart. And as I spent time on your path, you changed me, and opened my heart to the beauty in others.

Ya Allah. YOU know and what little I know is a gift from you. That I ever doubted your creation, that I ever despaired, that I ever filled my heart with hatred was my own shortcoming.

I won’t allow my hatred to close doors on people. Perhaps by me leaving the door open for them, it’ll be how I walk through your doors of Paradise.

Jumada Al Thani 20th, 1440
February 25th, 2019

Your servant,
Arthur K. Richards

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