Love Thy Neighbour
February 5, 2018
Longing to See all things Made New
God has put a longing in each one of us to see all things made new. God’s original design was broken in the fall of mankind (Genesis 3). Our experience of life is brokenness. There is a disconnect between people and God, a disconnect within ourselves, a brokenness in our human relationships, and a torn relationship with creation. Yet, God has promised to make all things new (Revelations 21:5). The life, death, and resurrection of Jesus bring the renewal, healing, wholeness, and flourishing that we are all looking for. King Jesus brings the reality of Heaven to bear upon his people. Today, we live in the tension of the Kingdom breaking in, yet not fully realized until Jesus’ return.
In my last article, I shared about my journey to leave a two-dimensional world and step into a 3D life: UP-IN-OUT. This is an UPward relationship with our Heavenly Father who loves us as His children, an INward relationship with a family of disciples, and an OUTward relationship with those who do not yet know the Goodness of the Father. God had to prune and reshape my life to allow room for outward-relationships.
Perhaps you are wondering, “How do I take steps into an outward relationship?” Or, simply put, “How do I love my neighbor? Where do I start?”
Find the Person of Peace
Let me give you a simple framework to get started. It is the same framework that Jesus gave to his twelve disciples in Luke 9 and to his seventy-two disciples in Luke 12. It is also found in Matthew 10 and Mark 6.
Jesus gathers his team and sends them on ahead of him, giving them the power and authority to drive out demons, cure diseases, proclaim the Kingdom of God, and heal the sick (Luke 9:1-2). Amazing! Jesus then takes his wider circle, the 72 disciples, and sends them out to do the same thing (Luke 10).
The instructions in Luke 9 and 10 are important for us today. We are told to extend our peace and see if it will return to us. When the peace of Christ rests upon a person, we are told to stay with this person of peace, eat with them, pray for them, and share the news of the Kingdom. In short, we are told to go and look for the person whom God has already prepared. The Holy Spirit is at work in the world to draw people to Jesus. We are told to find the persons of peace, the people in whom we see the Kingdom of God already at work. We must learn to see where God is working and join in.
Jesus lives out this principle in selecting disciples, as well as how he sends disciples into relational mission. We see a simple pattern for finding persons of peace. A person of peace will:
(1) Welcome us – “If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them…” Luke 10:5
(2) Serve us – “Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you…” Luke 10:7
(3) Listen to us – “Tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you’…” Luke 10:9
A New Framework for Living
This principle has turned everything in my life upside-down. Likewise, for my wife. We are surprised time and time again at who God brings into our life; it is not people who we would expect! Yet over and over, we find a warm welcome, a willingness to serve us, and an ear to hear what God is putting on our hearts for people.
Jesus sends you out to find friends who he has already prepared for you. Your job is to identify the person of peace and spend time with them. Get to know them. Hear their story. Pray for them. Pray for healing when they are sick. Share the good news of the King who has come to make all things new.
Missed the last article? Check it out here.
Questions? Comments? Contact Pastor Cameron