Love Thy Neighbor


(Our Theme for the Month!)

Galatians 5:14 – “For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

It seems so simple, the call to love your neighbor…to be kind and considerate, and to treat those you encounter as you would want to be treated. I find, though, that this is not something that comes naturally to everyone. Almost everyone and everything around us urges people to look out for themselves, please themselves, do what’s good for themselves…It’s so rare that we receive messages that convey this key command from God—Love your neighbor as yourself—to be selfless, sacrificing, and to consider someone else’s well-being above your own.

This decree becomes even more challenging to fulfill when we consider the fact that the “neighbor” to which God refers is not only your friend, your relative, or your loved one; but also your enemy, your adversary, the proverbial bane of your existence. Loving them as you love yourself?? THAT’S when things get really tough and really interesting. I think it’s important to note, here, that loving someone does not equate to serving as their proverbial punching bag. It doesn’t mean that you have to just sit there and accept unacceptable behavior. I think that God simply means that we are to show them the grace and mercy in their flawed state that God shows us daily in ours. In doing so, we begin to create spaces for change, for reconciliation, for redemption, and hopefully, for salvation.

So, in the end, the mission is clear—Love thy neighbor. Your love, your patience, your acceptance may be the very thing needed to bring about a miraculous and life-changing work in someone else’s life.

Song: Speak Life by Toby Mac
Song: Set the World on Fire by Britt Nicole

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Shine Your Light!

(This was a billboard I saw while driving one day that made me smile as I paused in the middle of my road rage lol)

Nothing Else Matters…


Relationship (Puzzle)


Luke 10:41-42 – “’Martha, Martha,’ the Lord answered, ‘you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.’”

Reflections: In this world, it is so easy to get caught up in the busyness of each day—earning our paychecks, handling our responsibilities, meeting others’ expectations… (My friends and family will tell you that I am particularly guilty of staying far too busy, and it is definitely something I am working on this year). Sometimes, we get so caught up in our day-to-day routines that we forget to stop for a moment and take the time to focus on the things that really matter—our relationships with family, friends, ourselves, and, of course, God.

In the story above, Martha is running to and fro, playing hostess and attending to her guests and household, but she is completely missing out on an amazing opportunity for some “QT” (quality time) with the Son of God.  Mary, on the other hand, takes a break from the work of the day to sit at Jesus’s feet and take advantage of every moment she has to spend in His loving presence. While Martha is filled with stress and anxiety, Mary is at rest, experiencing the peace that comes when we enter into the presence of the Lord.

Jesus responds to Martha’s complaints about Mary by admonishing the former for her busyness and explaining that all of the things she is trying to accomplish—much of it, in her mind, for Jesus—matters so little in comparison to the one thing He actually wants from her: a relationship…her time and attention. Did you catch that? Relationship matters more than all of our good works. And when we spend that quality time nurturing our relationship with God, we are more prepared for Him to guide us to the work that He feels is most important for us to do. He will help us prioritize and work smarter, not harder. 🙂

If you, like me, often find yourself too busy to attend to the relationship(s) that matter most, it’s time to take a step back and reprioritize. God did not intend for us to be so busy that our work and activities constantly take center stage. Take a break. Ask God for guidance about how to use your time and energy more efficiently, so that you can focus on the things that are truly important in this life.  

As one oh so wise young man once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Ferris Bueller, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.


See Also:

James 4:8 – “Come close to God, and God will come close to you.”

Song: Nothing Else Matters by Israel Houghton

Shine Bright!

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

It’s Just No Fun Doing It Alone!



Hebrews 10:24-25 “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.”

1 Thessalonians 5:11 – “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”

Reflections: You know, there is definitely something to be said for taking the time to fellowship with other believers, particularly those with such sweet Spirits that you literally feel the warmth of God’s love flowing from them, even over the phone. Such people create such a wonderful, nurturing environment that is so welcome during both good times and bad.

I have to admit that I often suffer from the “Lone Wolf Syndrome.” The experience of having some people jump in and out of my life has made me a bit hesitant to open up and depend on others. And if I’m honest, the habit of self-reliance has become a part of my nature (to a fault–this is something I’m working on). I somehow allow myself to consistently fill the role of the rock and strong shoulder for people around me, but play the quiet martyr suffering in silence when I go through times of trial (yes, I’m working on this, too 🙂 ).

There’s a REASON that God cautions us against forsaking the fellowship of believers, and instead encourages us to lean on and support one another. I understand this reasoning every time I leave a gathering of my sisters feeling refreshed, renewed, and strengthened by the Spirit. These relationships gird us up and help us to stand strong in the midst of trials, but they also serve to hold us accountable—to ourselves, to our calling, to our brothers and sisters in Christ, and to God.

If you have not already found a group of believers with whom you can fellowship, or if those with whom you used to break bread  were only in your life for a season (for whatever reason), I encourage you to be intentional about seeking out the fellowship of other believers. We all need that support and love, and it’s always wonderful to know that the people of God are standing in agreement with you and lifting you up in prayer. This journey can be a rough one, but take heart, God never meant for us to walk the road alone. 🙂

Shine bright!

Also read:

Proverbs 27:17 – “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”