You can’t love on the people around you if you don’t know them and know what they’re going through. We are gifted with the Spirit who leads us out into the world to speak such that others may hear of God’s great love.
It’s too easy to name excuses for why we don’t “Love thy neighbor.” We argue about who is our neighbor, and what it means to love them. So let’s start simple, and close to home. Do you know the names of your neighbors? No excuses, you can’t love well who you don’t know.
When we only do what we do because of surface level rationale like, “the Bible says so,” we tend to be dis-interested or marginally engaged. Knowing why we do something is necessary for deep faithfulness. This is vitally true for serving others. If we don’t know why we serve, can we really serve well?
Financial giving isn’t something we like to talk about – it ranks with religion and politics around the dinner table. Our hesitancy to talk about giving is a byproduct of our misunderstanding why we give. So let’s talk about it – why do you give?
Too often we are expected to follow along without knowing why we are doing what we are doing. Christian practices are no different, like prayer. Prayer isn’t meant to be a last ditch effort to get the Almighty to save us from our human failures. Prayer instead is an ongoing response to our joy in the Lord.
Easter is not a call to return to the way things were. It is a reminder that in Christ’s resurrection, God’s love wins out over death. It is an invitation to see ourselves redeemed in the reflection of God’s grace, as we hear our name called by the risen Lord, that we may go forth to share the good news, that Christ the Lord is risen today!
From shouts of “Hosanna,” to the cries of “Crucify him,” our voices are indicative of our brokenness and need for salvation. This week, perhaps more than any other, offers us pause to consider, how do our voices speak of the need for a Savior?
The brokenness of humanity is often best defined in our claim to be God – to have the perfection and holiness of Christ, and to reserve the right to offer the judgement of God. Yet, we are not God, we are broken images of God’s creation in need of healing and salvation.
We are so quick to point out the faults in others, especially as it gives us a beneficial leg-up or increase in personal well-being. But Jesus refuses to engage with those who skew the Biblical word for personal gain. On which side of the proverbial line in the sand do you stand?
It’s one thing to know the biblical text. It’s another to be willing to follow it without question. How often do we engage in theological debate simply to avoid share love with those we choose to hate?