How Do I Love My Neighbor As Myself?

February 14, 2022

I find myself reading the verse of the day on my Bible app in between house chores, taking care of the baby, gardening, etc. Many times I just glance over it, but lately I’ve been reflecting on this new season of life as a full-time mom and wife and how God can use me for His purposes. Recently, Galatians 5:14 popped up as my verse of the day. It says, “For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”

As soon as I read this verse I felt convicted. Am I doing this? Do I take time to reach out to my unbelieving neighbors and friends and love them? It’s easy to just say I don’t have time. After all, I am busy, and yet the Holy Spirit has tugged at my heart over the years to say something even when it’s uncomfortable. I taught in public school for 14 years, and that experience brought many challenges, yet God gave me opportunities to share the gospel and invite colleagues to Bridge through many lunchtime conversations.

My daughter just turned one, and in planning her party, it was definitely easier just to invite family. We all love the comfort of family—wearing comfy clothes, no makeup, and hair tossed up in a bun. But plans changed when my husband nudged me to think of all our neighbors and look at the party as another opportunity to love and get to know them. We ended up inviting the neighbors all around our house and ones we’ve met on walks with the baby, and we were so blessed by their company. They took pictures and videos like it was their own child being celebrated. We were soon invited to dinner at their houses, and we know God is working in all this. 

In the busyness of life, I’m reminded that just inviting people into our everyday plans can be truly meaningful to others and goes a long way. I’m very thankful to God for my husband’s nudging to build relationships in our neighborhood. We’re praying that these first conversations will be like seeds planted to further share the good news of Jesus Christ!

As we build relationships, I know God is always faithful to give us the right words to say at the right time. This gives me courage to speak even when I feel self-focused and shy in my introverted self. I’m reminded of a verse my grandfather and dad both mentioned before they passed into God’s presence: Mark 8:36, which says, “For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?” May I remember this verse as well and seek to love others just as Christ first loved me.

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