I mentioned the my enemies were probably people I didn't know. A few years ago now I booked in for a vasectomy. The doctor whom I went to proudly told me that he was trained by Margaret Sparrow. I suddenly felt very uncomfortable, and not for the obvious reason. He had just named one of my greatest enemies.
Dame Margaret Sparrow is my 'unknown' enemy. More than any other New Zealander, Dame Margaret is associated in my mind with abortion. She practiced as an abortionist for many years not far from where I live at the Parkview Abortion Clinic. But more than that, she has been an unrelenting advocate for more liberal abortion laws. Even worse than that, the State has lavished her with honours, presenting her to the community as an admirable and imitable person.
I don't know Dame Margaret personally. Like so many of our enemies, she represents an idea I hate. And I concede that if I ever met her, I would most likely find her to be a pleasant and intelligent person. After all, she comes from Taranaki!
The challenge I left myself last time was to name my enemies and workout what it would take to love them. Not like them or agree with them, necessarily. But see in them the image of God, treating them with kindness and respect. Here's how I've decide to love my enemy, Dame Margaret Sparrow. I'm going to read the first of her histories of abortion in New Zealand published by VUW Press. It's called Abortion Then & Now: New Zealand Abortion Stories From 1940 to 1980 (Victoria University Press, 2010). It's costing me $50. So, not such cheap grace!
I figure this is a way to treat her with respect. Listen to her. Humanize her. I think this is something like what Jesus meant by loving our enemies; a practice surely right at the heart of peacemaking.