Summer is finally here! As we come out of our winter hibernation and begin interacting with our neighbors in our backyard, at the ball field, and around the park, many of us are asking, “How can I love my neighbor well this summer?”
We want to see how you interact with your neighborhoods and communities this summer. Tag us in photos of your neighborhood with #myneighborhoodsocc
June 3: Be Present
Nicodemus was a leader in faith and his community. He had his religion and his theology figured out and taught others how to do the same. But, when Jesus came along, Nicodemus started questioning everything he once felt so sure of.
Not knowing where he could turn out of fear of his fellow Pharisees, Nicodemus went straight to the source of his confusion; Jesus himself. And under the cloak of darkness, Jesus gave Nicodemus his time and attention and taught this teacher what it means to find eternal life in Him.
Scripture: John 3:1-15
June 10: Be Helpful (Tabitha)
There’s an insurance company whose tagline is, “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there.” What is true for insurance companies is also true for us, good neighbors give each other a hand in times of need.
In Acts 9, we see two examples of people who were helpful to their neighbors. The first is of Tabitha, who saw a need in her community for someone to care for a group of widows and then met that need by serving them. The second example is Peter, who, when tragedy struck in Tabitha’s life, went to offer a helping hand and then stayed a while longer. What we learn from these two examples is that to be a helpful neighbor, you must be willing to make yourself available to those in need.
Scripture: Acts 9:36-43
June 17: Be Interested (The Philippian Jailer)
Life is busy and for most of us, we go about our day barely noticing those around us. Even when we get home at night, we pull into our driveway or garage and, at best, give a nod or a wave to our neighbors before closing ourselves off from the outside world.
But, the truth is, it’s difficult to love our neighbors when we don’t know them. And to know them takes being interested in them. Interested in what brings them joy and happiness and fulfillment. Interested in their hurts, their struggles, and their fears.
Luke records a time when Paul and Silas took interest in a man they had every reason to avoid. What happened next not only changed the course of his life, but also his family. And it all started with Paul and Silas being interested.
Scripture: Acts 16:25-34
June 24: Be Inviting (Andrew)
Andrew was searching for something more in life than being a fisherman and continuing the family trade. It’s what first drew him to follow John the Baptist and be a part of the revolution he was starting. However, when John pointed to Jesus as the Lamb of God, Andrew quickly started following him, and after spending one day with Jesus, he was convinced he was the Messiah.
What he did next would become a theme in Andrew’s life, he began inviting people to follow Jesus with him, starting with his brother, Simon. As one author put it, “Andrew bringing his brother, Peter, to Jesus is perhaps as great a service to the Church as ever any man did.”
His example teaches us that the greatest way to be a neighbor to someone is to bring them to Jesus and it causes us to ask ourselves, “Who am I inviting into the adventure of following Jesus with me?”
Scripture: John 1:35-42
(Series runs through August 12)