Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Community News 11/21/17


Matthew 7:12; Mark 12:28-32
We all have neighbors. I live in Los Angeles so my neighbors aren’t an acre away but right there, like, right there. So close in fact, that you might be able to stick your nose out the window and smell what they’re cooking! You’ve likely stepped out of your car and smelled someone barbecuing, and said, “Wow, someone’s barbecuing!” You might have even said it loud enough, hoping they’d hear you and invite you over.

While at a conference, the speaker asked us to draw a grid with 9 equally sized boxes 3 across and 3 down. He then asked us to write our name in the center box, to mark our home. He then asked us to fill in the other boxes with the names of our neighbors; the people that lived all around us. To the terror of many, it was hard to come up with all those names! In one box I wrote, “guy with electric lawnmower.” I know, super profound. He then asked us to fill in any details of those individuals. Everyone shrunk in their seats just a little more. The harsh reality was that few of us really knew who our neighbors were and any details about them. Unfortunately, many of us have missed the chance to truly know our neighbors.

The Great Commandment (Mark 12:28-32) encourages us to love the Lord with all our hearts, soul, mind and strength and love our neighbors as ourselves. Doesn’t it reek of hypocrisy to say that we love our neighbors, but we don’t know their names? If God has truly sent us to love our neighbors, then it must start somewhere. The reality is that God has planted you where you live and blessed you so that you can be a blessing. Your sphere of influence isn’t just where you work or study, but where you live too. God loves your neighbors very much, so much in fact, that He sent you to be his representative.

See if you know the names of the neighbors that live around you. The first step to loving your neighbor is knowing their names!

Spend some time praying for the neighbors you know and those that you don’t know yet. Ask God to give you his heart for them. Also, pray that God will give you opportunities to interact with them in the future.

Adapted From:  Life On Mission - You Version