Loving Your Neighbor
- For those following along, last month we looked at facts and figures which told us our neighbors are far, far more open to engaging about faith than we may have imagined. In short, we might be fearing things we don’t need to fear.
- Just this past month, I had a discussion at the end of my driveway with a neighbor. We talked about the Covid shot (she’s a nurse), and how I thought getting the shot was an extension of loving our neighbor as ourself, something Jesus told us to do. As she walked away, she told me she’s loving these little conversations we have. I found common ground and simply introduced my view of Jesus’ heart and how I saw his perspective playing out in her world, our world, to make it better. I wonder if she is more open to Jesus than she was before. I suspect she is. I’m praying for her with excitement.
- Let’s admit it. People are far more open to Jesus than you and I used to think they are. It’s time to act.
Where will you take a step toward knowing and loving your neighbor?
- Maybe your first step is telling God you are willing to love your neighbor. He may begin by helping you notice them, wave to them, and step across the street to practice curiosity. I practice curiosity in this way: everyone who walks by my office window (working from home), I wonder what their life is like. I wonder what their dreams are. I wonder how life has caused hurt or confusion, joy or excitement. I wonder what makes them smile.
- For those already connecting, the next step might be having a backyard gathering and inviting a few people. Just do it.
- Believe it. Most of your neighbors are open to building a relationship with you. And many of them may have been churched in the past and stepped away as they went to college, had a bad experience, or just need someone to listen to them before they’d return to Jesus and his people. Did you know 45% of those who have left the church imagine themselves returning in the next five years? That sounds like an opening to me.
Be a Neighbor in April
Choose something that is safe for your situation.
- Invite a neighbor to take a walk with you when the temperature hits 60 degrees.
- Visit the neighbor who is recently widowed and just be with them — listening and loving.
- Start a book club. Choose the book together.
- Invite neighbors and friends to join you as you view Covenant’s worship service. Remember, if you have a relationship with them and they trust you, they may say “yes.”
- Talks at the mailbox
- Lunch together
- Memorial Day Celebration
- Bake something and deliver it to your neighbor
- A movie night
- Shared yard work
- Play golf together
- Plan a field trip
- Be creative. Come up with something better, more tailored to your neighbors and neighborhood, and your comfort level.
Choose to do something. Take one step, just one — for the glory of God and for the vigor it will bring to your faith. Stick with it. Build on it. Move as God moves. Have fun with this.
Let me know what you are doing. Where do you need help, encouragement, or support? Email me.
We are in this together!