MONDAY, MAY 24
The man wanted to justify his actions, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
Luke 10:29 (NLT2)
LOVE GOD, LOVE PEOPLE – WHO’S MY NEIGHBOR?
Recently, I came across an internet story about (one of my childhood idols and American icon) Fred Rogers of Mister Rogers Neighborhood. Perhaps most of you are aware that Fred Rogers, was a Presbyterian Minister, and died – February 27 – in 2003 at the age of 74. But what you might not be aware of is a story that he – shared once – about visiting different churches each Sunday (during his days as a seminarian at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary) in order to hear a variety of preachers. According to Mr. Rogers, one Sunday, he was treated to “the most poorly crafted sermon he had ever heard, but when he turned to the friend who had accompanied him, he found her in tears. It was exactly what I needed to hear, she told Mister Rogers. That’s when Mister Rogers realized “the space between someone doing the best he or she can and someone in need is HOLY GROUND”. (Ken Harris)
Many of us remember hearing Mister Rogers sing, “Would you be mine, could you be mine, won’t you be my neighbor?” In Luke 10, the Jewish lawyer asks Jesus, “But who is my neighbor?” In Jewish culture, only a fellow Jew was a neighbor. Samaritans and Gentiles were not considered as neighbors. The lawyer was implying he has fulfilled the Law by treating his fellow Jew with respect in keeping with the Law. Therefore, he has earned eternal life by complying with the Law, not through a personal relationship with God. Our friend thought he finally had Jesus. But Jesus is smarter and wiser. He told him the parable of the Good Samaritan revealing that anyone in our path should be considered a neighbor.
As Mother Theresa liked to say, “Help one person at a time, and always start with the person nearest you.” How have you shown God’s love to your literal neighbors? On Sunday, Mike shared several ways we could live out the principles of this passage. One way he shared was helping with our Northstar Kids ministry. If you are interested in learning more about how you can love God by loving kids, email Kristy Webb at [email protected].
Thank God for your literal neighbors. Ask Him to show you ways you can show them love in tangible ways.