Love Your Neighbor (Ps 22:24 and Romans 8:14-19)


As we talked about Sunday, compassion is both the catalyst and engine that helps us reach out beyond ourselves and our already existing groups of relationships to love all those around us (our neighbors). Compassion for those we already know and love is a great way to begin to cultivate the practice of compassion/action, but compassion inside a closed circle is compassion in it’s infancy – as we turn our compassionate gaze toward those we do not easily identify with, our compassion begins to grow and mature toward the compassion Jesus demonstrates for us in his ministry, death, and resurrrsction. Consider these words of his from the sermon on the mount as you pray and go about your day:

43 “You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. 44 But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! 45 In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. 46 If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. 47 If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that. 48 But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48) 


About the Author

Isaac Gaff is the Managing Director of Worship and Creative Arts at Calvary UMC