If we are to love our neighbors, before doing anything else we must see our neighbors. With our imagination as well as our eyes, that is to say like artists, we must see not just their faces but the life behind and within their faces. Here it is love that is the frame we see them in.

Frederick Buechner in Whistling in the Dark (1988)

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“The Samaritan went to him and bandaged his wounds, tending them with oil and wine. Then he placed the wounded man on his own donkey, took him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day, he took two full days’ worth of wages and gave them to the innkeeper. He said, ‘Take care of him, and when I return, I will pay you back for any additional costs.’”

Luke 10:34-35

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What do you have that you can give to those in need? I don’t mean just clothes that you can’t wear anymore or shoes that aren’t in style. What do you have to give? Are you willing to share your lunch with a hungry friend? Are you, like the Samaritan, willing to change your plans, spend money, give up transportation in order to tend to the needs of someone else? I think we’re all capable of acts of great love for our neighbors. You have gifts that can be used to see your neighbor’s pain, to understand what he or she may need, or to walk alongside someone through your lives.

You have gifts that help you show God’s love to the people that most folks don’t really even see. Look through the lens of a Christ-follower when you look at the world around you. The chance to reach out in good times and bad is there every day.

Stephanie Vance

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Creator God, you created me with gifts that I can use to make a difference. Guide me to see the places that these gifts will be most needed. Amen.

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God loves us. Not because of or in spite of anything. There is no qualifier to God’s love.

God asks us to love the same way.

Go and love today and always!

Stephanie Vance

Stephanie Vance is commissioned field personnel with Cooperative Baptist Fellowship and is currently serving as the National Manager for Together for Hope, CBF’s rural development coalition. She also serves as the Area Coordinator for the Rural Americas Team of field personnel. She lives in Athens, AL.

My Hope is Built on Nothing Less

Jon Chacko

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