We are a culture that walks around with our eyes only half open. How often have we driven past someone stranded on the side of the road without so much as a second-glance? How often have we walked past the vagrant sleeping on the sidewalk without a thought--or even worse, muttered under our breath as we went by? How often have we infringed upon the rights of others in order to get what we want? How much do we bend the rules to get things to turn out our way?
We complain about the world, about how rarely people help one another, about getting ripped off, and about corrupt institutions and government. However, we tend not to look at where it all starts: ourselves. In Leviticus 19:18 God introduced the concept of "Loving your neighbour as yourself". In the New Testament, Jesus pinpoints this principle as the second half of the two-pronged guide to abiding in God's plan for human behaviour: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself" (Luke 10:27).
As Jesus illustrates in the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37), our neighbour is everyone we meet--no matter who they are, and we are to help them. If we all started love our neighbour as ourselves, how would we change our behaviour? How would our world look?
What do you think? How can we love our neighbour as ourselves, and what would the world look like if we did? Leave your comments below!
For more on this topic, make sure you come to Abundant Springs on Sunday, August 25, for Pastor Stephen's message: "Being Neighbourly" or keep an eye out for it to become available to listen to online here: http://bit.ly/166s9HS.
--Pastor Stephen Valcourt