Not Just “the People Next Door”

Not Just “the People Next Door”

Worship through giving.

Will you partner with us as we respond to the critical needs of our community as we face the coming weeks together?

For Discussion

The sermon series “The Art of Neighboring” wraps up today and Pastor Bryce has some good thought-provoking statements. Two stand out. Let these two guide you as you come out of this sermon series:

First: Move from the Art of Neighboring to MASTERING the Art of Neighboring.
As with anything that we want to master, it takes time and a lot of practice. In this series, we have learned a lot of specific things that can help us be better neighbors. There are visits and conversations over the fence. You can help with a task or look after something while they are on vacation. But it all boils down to what Paul says in 1 Corinthians: “If I do all of that, but do not have love, …it is in vain.”

So here is the next step: Look into ways of showing love to your neighbor. Look up what it means to love. Maybe even read a book like “Love as a Way of Life” by Gary Chapman. Make it a point to learn more about loving one another. Share it with us if you have a good idea of how to love your neighbor!

Second: Racism and the Gospel can’t coexist. They are polar opposites.
God’s whole purpose of sending Jesus Christ was to reconcile mankind to himself, and among each other. Since the initial bite of sin, the relationship between men and women is strained, to say the least. Since sin entered the world, humans compare themselves with each other, and think either higher of themselves or feel inferior. Since the fall in the garden of Eden, shame, anger, and lust have ruled and destroyed relationships. The Gospel is literally the Good News that Jesus came to heal what is broken, bring peace to the hurting, and restore relationships.

One of the things that Pastor Bryce mentions for us to do in times like these is pray. Now, don’t dismiss this so fast. Prayer has been the main driver for any miracle we see in the Bible. Without prayer, many of these miracles would not have happened.

Here is what you can do: For each day of the week, chose one area you want to pray for.

For example:
Monday can be dedicated for Family. Tuesday for your co-workers. Wednesday for the government. Thursday for current events in the news. Friday for your neighbors. Saturday for your school district. And Sunday for your church (mix it however you decide, but after you are done, stick with it).

Now, pray! Each day dedicate 3-5 minutes to pray for that particular area. Each week increase your prayer time a little bit until you are praying for about 15 minutes per day. I think we can dedicate about 1% of our time to prayer (if you are a math geek, 15 minutes is just about 1% of your day).

Let us be diligent in loving our neighbors and praying for the world we live in.

Happy neighboring,