Pause

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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Listen

A legal expert stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to gain eternal life?”

Jesus replied, “What is written in the Law? How do you interpret it?”

He responded, “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.

Jesus said to him, “You have answered correctly. Do this and you will live.”

But the legal expert wanted to prove that he was right, so he said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

Luke 10:25-29

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Think

Do you have this same question? Who is my neighbor? The answer is simple. Every human being on this earth is your neighbor. That’s pretty cut and dried, right? Easy to do, surely… Sometimes, yes. Sometimes, no!

One of the hardest things to do is love folks as we love ourselves when they don’t do the same. If we love only those who are loveable, we’re missing out on a great way to share the love of Christ with the world. There are those who make it difficult to love them but they are also created by the same loving God that created you. Loving those who aren’t easy to love is a living sermon, a profession of your faith, and definitely good for everyone – including you.

Stephanie Vance

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Pray

Creator God, help me to have the courage to reach out in love to those who seem hard to love. Amen.

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Go

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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