God's Love, Love, Spiritual Warfare

Got Haters?

“For we wrestle NOT against flesh and blood…” Ephesians 6:12 KJV

For the past few months I’ve seen a lot of tweets and statuses about haters. They’ve been about ridding facebook pages of haters, crediting haters to mental stress and emotional turmoil, and giving haters the position of blocking blessings. Most times when I would see these statuses and updates my first reply to the status would be, “haters are irrelevant” or I would end up texting them encouragement that “people” do not hold the key to our happiness. The urban dictionary defines the word hater as someone that cannot be happy for someone else’s success. Okay, I get that. But what I want to share today is the power in thinking beyond perceived limitations.

As a Christian God tells us in 1 John 4:4, “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” (NIV) This Word is an ego booster. It doesn’t matter what people say or try to develop to hinder your progress, greater is He that is in you. Furthermore, Romans 8: 37-39 reminds us, “…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.” (NIV) So guess what? Haters cannot determine how far you go, what you accomplish, or smash your success. People can say things, but giving them credit for failure, when you are really the one that failed to realize that God is greater, is not the case.

It is so easy to push the blame for us holding baggage, insecurities, and the likewise on to other people, instead of focusing our minds on more mature things. I remember at one point I called myself deleting people because they were not “pro-Me”. After growth and maturity I realized, I can delete my facebook list all day long and I still will not remove “haters” or those that don’t truly love me. If this is your goal, you will spend most of your time trying to seek out the bad in people opposed to thinking higher thoughts about things that matter.

As believers of Christ, we are charged “not to conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (Romans 12:12 NIV) If your mind isn’t focused on moving past petty issues, gossiping, lying, backbiting, and heart breaking, giving a shout out to your haters is not going to help. Due to the nature of humans, I am almost certain that I have what’s been defined here as “haters.” But guess what, Jesus had Judas. Pray for your enemies and pray that you are able to discern what to disclose and what not to disclose. Also, take a look at who’s in your inner circle. You don’t have to make an announcement, because believe it or not, those that you deem as haters are the main people you are probably ministering to and don’t know it. But seek Godly counsel. Proverbs 13:20 states, “Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.” (NIV) Walk with those that love you and be an example to those that don’t know you (or what we term ‘haters’). No one said you all have to be best friends.

My title asked the question, “got haters?” Well I have an answer for you. No, you do not have haters, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (Ephesians 6:12 KJV) The devil has deceived us into classifying people as haters opposed to calling him out for being the core. Rebuke the devil and the “hater” influence. It’s not her or him, but the spiritual war that is at stake and as a Christian learning to mature, we have to look past the flesh and understand that God will fight the battle of demonic forces of hatership if we acknowledge and give it to Him.

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for showing me when my focus is all wrong or when I am sacrificing love for hate or badgering a friend when I should be badgering the devil. I give You honor for fighting ALL of my battles, guiding me into healthy counsel of friends, and strengthening my faith when I’m faced with those that do not have my best interest at heart. God, may all things that I encounter be to Your glory. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I EMPOWER you to look beyond the ‘hater’ and love them as Christ loves you. Recognize that maybe you are what’s holding up the process of spiritual growth, not the one tagged as your opponent. This is NOT an easy task, especially if a person is blatant about it, but realize this, If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:38 NIV)

Read a related EmpowerMoment: No Love in the City

As a professional, Mrs. Khalilah Burton is College Biology Instructor. She is also currently pursuing a Doctorate of Education in Higher Ed and Community College Leadership. Khalilah is passionate about her faith journey and uses this key scripture as her inspiration: “But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31 KJV) She teaches Young Adult Bible Study and Sunday School and also serves as a guest speaker and panelist for various events for women and Christian empowerment. Khalilah resides in Millbrook, Alabama with her wonderful husband Donald Burton, Jr. and their energetic three-year old daughter. They attend Vaughn Forest Church in Montgomery, Alabama. Check out Khalilah’s Christian weight loss blog here.