Tuesday, January 19, 2016

January 20, 2015

“On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”  “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?” He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.” Luke 10:25-28

If you were asked to define love how would you describe it?

Jesus described love as a “godly neighbor”. When asked about the key to eternal life Jesus said essentially, “Love God completely and then live out His love in your neighborhood.”

That sounds a lot like “loving people to life” doesn’t it?

Think about it! How much better would your neighborhood become if everyone on your block was passionate about God and expressed that love in practical ways every day?

How would it impact a city if enough neighborhoods within those city limits loved God completely and lived it out in their neighborhoods?

What would happen within a county that had several cities like that?

Imagine a state that contained a number of counties made up of cities with neighborhoods like that?

This past Sunday I got a first-hand glimpse of what that might look like when I attended my sister-in-law’s memorial service. Jan Gee, was Barbara’s sister and best friend. She lived in a gated community in the Ocala, Florida area until she succumbed to ovarian cancer on January 1st. Her service was this past Sunday.

Sunday as I stood in the receiving line for an hour and a half I met neighbors (several hundred) and fellow gym members, her massage therapist, church members, golf partners, people who had worked with her over 15 years ago and fellow choral members who had been touched by her love. Nearly everyone had a story to tell of how Jan had expressed God’s love by some act of kindness, thoughtfulness, helpfulness, or just being sensitive to their needs. I saw their tears. I heard their kind words. I listened as they choked up as telling about what Jan meant to them.

There was no question that Jan’s neighborhood, Bay Tree Greens, was a much better place because Jan Gee lived there. The Oak Run community was brightened by her smile and her kind words. Royal Oaks Golf Club was a better place to be when Jan Gee was involved. Living Water Wesleyan Church was blessed by how she served and how she sang.

Jan was a walking example of what it means to “love people to life”. As Jesus promised, she inherited eternal life!

Maybe you think, “I’m just one person, what difference can I make in such a big world?”

According to what I saw Sunday as nearly 300 hundred people crowded into her memorial service to honor Jan and comfort each other, I would say one person who is willing to be a godly neighbor can make a significant difference!

What difference are you making where you live?

Are you a godly person expressing His love to your neighbors in meaningful ways on a regular basis?

Are you loving people to life in your neighborhood? 

In your workplace?

Will you do it today?