January 10

TODAY IS…

a great day to love others.

“And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”  Matthew 22:39 NIV

God gave mankind many gifts, many talents, and many skills.

He made us seemingly without limit in our ability to develop technologies and products that are extremely complex and require a tremendous amount of education, thought, and expertise. He gave us the ability to develop an almost incomprehensible array of vehicles with which to traverse the land, the oceans, the sky, and even space itself. In spite of all of these God-given gifts, talents, and skills which enable us to achieve ever-increasing levels in science and technology, manufacturing and production, education, medicine, and building, we sometimes seem at a loss to fully comprehend the simple concept of loving our fellow man.

Perhaps the concept itself is so simplistic in nature that we automatically diminish its significance and deny its importance.

Jesus Christ did not think it was insignificant or unimportant. In fact, when asked by the Pharisees what He thought was the most important commandment in the Law of Moses, “Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'” (Matthew 22:37-39 NIV).

If that, in and of itself, is not enough to demonstrate the importance of loving your neighbor, Jesus went on to say, “The entire law and all of the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:40 NLT). So, not only did Jesus say that loving your neighbor is important, He placed it second only to showing love to God Himself in terms of importance and significance.

Jesus was not referring only to those who live in close proximity to us, of course. To God, the entire world that He created is a very small place and all of mankind should consider all other inhabitants of God’s creation to be his neighbor regardless of where they live, or whatever their race, creed, or social background.

We should all reach out in love to anyone we see who needs assistance. Often we become so wrapped up in our own little corner of the world and become so overwhelmed with our own lives and problems that we fail to lift our heads up and look around us. When we do that, we realize that there is always someone in greater need than we are. When we take the time, and make the effort, to reach out to another human being, we not only learn a little about ourselves, but we learn a little more about God’s love for us. When we help someone else with their problems, God helps ours seem to diminish just a little, and those that remain seem easier to handle.

Loving our neighbor is a simple concept with far-reaching impact. It is a concept that is important to the Lord. Make it important to you as well.

*******

Taken from “TODAY IS….A Gift From God”, (C) 2013 Tony Casson

About Tony Casson

" For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11 NLT)
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