What would happen if you started loving your neighbors?
‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.” – Mark 12:31 (NLT)
Too many time people make the mistake of thinking religion is a big list of to-do’s. When Jesus came to earth, He simplified things. He started with the command to love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength (Mark 12:30). Then, He said, love others as much as yourself.
Do those two things and you will live the way I intended. Almost sounds too simple, doesn’t it? Yet when you love your neighbor—meaning anyone you come in contact with—you will find a secret to peace and contentment.
Granted, not everyone will live this way. The conflicts we know today aren’t likely to end magically tomorrow. You will still have to lock your doors. People will still get angry and loose their cool. Bullies will still exist. But there is power in role modeling. When you smile and say something optimistic to another person, that individual will have a better day. He or she may pass on the favor, too.
What would happen if you started loving your neighbors? If you helped an elderly neighbor by mowing their grass? Gave a compliment to a co-worker? Told a close friend or two how much they mean to your life?
You may feel like changing the world and its seven billion people is an impossible task. And you’d be right. But changing your corner of the world isn’t. You can create a better world and leave a better impression when you actively love your neighbor.
So, what have you got to lose? Put aside your concerns for a minute. Think of someone you can help. It may be nothing more than offering a kind word. Or something as profound as volunteering to help build a home for a needy person. There is no limit to ways you can love your neighbor.
Catalyst for Spiritual Growth:
1 — Think about someone who has been a shining example of love to you? How did they impact your life? Think about a way that you can do the same for someone else.
2 — Watch the video for “Live Like That” by the Sidewalk Prophets.
3 — Read Matthew 25:32-46.