As we strive to love God and develop faith, hope, and love in our lives, we begin to see and set our priorities clearly. We all know what’s most important. We’ve all done the calculations. No matter what the world may offer us in terms of fame, fortune, and pleasure… LOVE remains our most cherished blessings. In addition to God, we love our family and friends most and wouldn’t trade them for anything!
But think about it for a minute… that group of people we love dearly are probably such a wide, varied, and diverse group. Close relatives and distant, new friends and old, co-workers, neighbors, and even friends of friends all make up our circles of relationships. No matter how different, no matter how we met, we love them.
God made the world this way. The people we share time, space, and life with become the people we love. We don’t necessarily choose to love them… it just happens because we share this time, space, and life with them daily.
Think about all the friends you have and how you met… chances are it was in the circumstances of sharing time, space, and life that you became friends.
In Matthew 22:37-39 Jesus says:
“‘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.’
God made the world this way. Our ‘neighbors’ should be the people we share time, space, and life with precisely because they live where we live. If we did… we would probably find new friends and new cherished blessings that we wouldn’t trade for anything.
The most important mission any one of us can be on… is the mission of friend-making. When we make new friends and develop relationships with those who share time, space, and life with us (our neighbors)… we extend peace and blessing, care and compassion, and life-long friendship.
The more love we share, the more relationships we develop, the more we fill the world with those most important things we wouldn’t trade for anything… and our neighbors wouldn’t trade either. That’s the kind of world God wants. That’s the kind of world we want.
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. –John 13:34-35