Monday, May 5, 2014

Weekly Devotional: Love Thy Neighbor

As I sit here and read through different scriptures in the bible brainstorming ideas to blog about I seem to stumble upon the same subject. And if coming across it in the bible wasn’t enough of a sign, a friend discussing a prime example of “loving thy neighbor” was the icing on top.

Time and time again we come across scriptures in the bible dealing with loving thy neighbor and showing kindness towards one another. Mark 12:30-31 says “30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. 31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these”. With everything that is going on in our lives from personal affairs, to pressures at work etc. it can be easy to get so wrapped up in our own web of situations that we are blinded to the needs of others. In a rush to get from one place to another we may walk by someone who needs a hand or help with a door. But if we can for a moment forget about  our own situation and “love they neighbor as thyself” we will not only help others but please God in the process.

Just last night I was in port authority walking quickly to make it to my gate in time to catch the bus home. It was about 10pm and I was pretty tired having been out since 11am. As I was walking at a brisk pace a man stopped me to ask for 80 cents. My initial thought was to just say no and keep walking since I had a bus to catch and didn’t want to miss it. But before I responded I thought for a second, what if I was in that position needing 80 cents, I would want someone to be kind enough to stop and lend me the money. So I stopped checked my pockets for any loose change. Now I didn’t have 80 cents, I didn’t have any change at all just a set of keys and my phone. At that point I could have walked off like sorry bro, got nothing for ya, but instead felt led to ask him why he needed the money. He proceeded to tell me he’s a little short for a bus ticket home. Knowing how badly I wanted to get home I again thought, what if I needed 80 cents. So I told him, I don’t have any change but I have my card, I can buy a ticket, he told me where he was going, and I purchased the ticket from the machine for him. He was extremely thankful and let me know how much he appreciated the gesture. Love thy neighbor as thyself,  “and do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased” Hebrews 13:16

A friend of mind also had a great example of loving thy neighbor today. While walking to work he saw an older man in a wheelchair stuck on the side of the highway. So as tons of people drove by, he risked being late and went over to lend a helping hand. One of the wheels seemed to have gotten caught in between the road and a ditch. Not only did he help get the wheel out but decided that he would push the man home. The man was extremely thankful and happy and stated how he was heading home from his dialysis session. He even gave him a shirt and prayed for him before leaving. "What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” James 2:14-17

We all have very important things we need to get done. But if given the opportunity take the time out to lend a helping hand. Love thy neighbor as thyself "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another". John 13:34

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