Parable of the Jumper Cables
But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. (Matthew 5:39)
An evil person is like a very weak car battery. They are seriously lacking in love power and as a result they malfunction, growl, spark and lack ability to get along with others. They are filled with selfishness and obsessed with grasping and clawing those around them in desperate attempts to meet their needs. What they really need, whether they are aware of it or not (and most of the time they are not) is a jump from another battery that is fully charged.
If the jumpers used to connect two batteries have too much resistance, the power cannot flow sufficiently to make enough difference to get the weak one started. Likewise, when we resist an evil person's attacks on us by taking offense, becoming defensive, retaliating or any similar ungodly responses, we prevent them from having access to the very power they so desperately need.
Most of the time an evil person is clueless about what it is they need. The demoniacs screamed the very opposite message at Jesus from what their hearts longed to experience from Him. But Jesus got the message of their hearts, looking past their external dysfunction and addressed the real problem without becoming intimidated by the their display of hostility.
Jesus tells us to be aware of the deeper needs of those who act with hostility towards us so that the power of God can flow through us and awaken hope in hearts so full of pain that they are lashing out at everyone around them.
We need to be cleansed of all resistance, fear, selfishness and every other attitude that is foreign to the true character of God. While it is impossible for us to produce love in and of ourselves, we can allow ourselves to be used as jumper cables to freely share God's love selflessly with those who are empty and dysfunctional.
However, there are definite differences of quality between various jumper cables. Some are thin with weak springs and little tenacity to hold onto the posts. Others are heavy duty with thick conductors, aggressive teeth and strong springs to grip tightly both the source of power and the contact posts on the weak battery.
These same qualities also impact our ability to deal with more difficult people. It is necessary to develop better conductivity in our hearts so what we can better assist people who display symptoms of weak love power in their lives. We must have a strong, intimate, tenacious hold on the heart of God who is the only real Source of agape love before we can successfully provide life, hope, strength and love to those lacking in these things.
Evil treatment of us by others only displays the symptoms that should alert us to their desperate condition if we are in tune with the perspective of heaven. But as we relay the power we are receiving from God through ourselves and pass it on to hungry souls malfunctioning against us, we can become effective conduits of light and life and power surging through us. This has the glorious benefit of also making us feel more alive even while our enemies are sucking all the life they can get out of us.
If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord." No, "if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap burning coals on their heads." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:18-21 NRSV)