Tuesday, April 14, 2009

50 Ways to Love Your Neighbor

Call to Action: 50 Ways To Love Your Neighbor

A compelling list of tangible ways we can love others as Christ has loved us.
Read it all

Some highlights from the list:
13. Look up the closest registered sex offender in your neighborhood and try to befriend him.

26 Organize a prayer vigil for peace outside a weapons manufacturer such as Lockheed Martin. Read the Sermon on the Mount out loud. For extra credit, do it every week for a year.

29. Go through a local thrift store and drop $1 bills in random pockets of the clothing being sold.

32. Go to an elderly home and get a list of folks who don´t get any visitors. Visit them each week and tell stories, read the bible together, or play board games.

34. Create a Jubilee fund in your Church congregation, matching dollar for dollar every dollar you spend internally with a dollar externally. If you have a building fund, create a fund to match it to give away and by mosquito nets or dig wells for folks dying in poverty.

35. Become a pen-pal with someone in prison.

41. Cover up all brand names, or at least the ones that do not reflect the upside-down economics of God’s Kingdom. Commit to only being branded by the cross

43. Eat only a bowl of rice a day for a week to remember those who do that for most of their life (take a multivitamin). Remember the 30,000 people who die each day of poverty and malnutrition.

49. Serve in a homeless shelter. For extra credit, go back and eat or sleep in the shelter and allow yourself to be served.

BONUS: Come up with your own list of ways to love your neighbor. Do at least one of them before the end of the week.



Like a Mustard Seed said...

extra credit?

Adam said...

What an awesome yet convicting list...I'm taking this with me to church this coming Sunday.

Bess said...

Some of those are really good, but a few I have a beef about. "Befriending a child molester." No children live in my house, but I would not befriend a child molester.. I will pray for them, however.
Also, I will not write to a person in prison. I am sorry, but I don't want an ex con knocking on my door.
As for inviting a pregnant woman into my house, I am unable to do that. There are organizations that help pregnant women. Maybe people can donate money to these, to help the women.. If one takes a pregnant woman into their house, what happens to her and the baby afteward? Just food for thought...

Keith Giles said...


Thanks for your honesty. I appreciate it very much, and I sympathize with many of your concerns, however when I think those things myself I cannot help but hear the Holy Spirit remind me that this kind of love is just ordinary love.

Jesus called us to love radically. He challenged us to love, not just those who love us in return (because don't child molesters and terorists do that?), but to love those who do not love us in return. To bless those who curse us, to embrace those who have never known love (real love) before.

Honestly, I have never done any of the things on this list (or most of them anyway), and I'm not sure if I will actually go to Meagan's List and find a sex offender living near me and befriend him...but I can't help but think that I should, or that at least I should be open to the possibility that this is exactly what Jesus would want me to do.

Love is an action. Love, as Jesus describes it, is dangerous. It will cost us something - our comfort, our safety, our security, our time, our reputation.

Whether or not you or I practice these specific acts of radical love, we are still called to move towards a love that passes understanding and a love that reaches outside our small circle of family and friends and beyond our comfort zone, to the very ones living behind the gates of Hell itself.

Like a Mustard Seed said...

"I'm not sure if I will actually go to Meagan's List and find a sex offender living near me and befriend him...but I can't help but think that I should, or that at least I should be open to the possibility that this is exactly what Jesus would want me to do."You're friends with me, aren't you? I may not be a registered sex offender, but my sin and filth are no less heinous in God's eyes. I have commited sexual sin, been a slave to perversion. Does the fact that our society has laws against some types of sin, but not others, make my iniquity any lesser in the eyes of God? Praise Jesus for His sacrifice on my behalf...

"Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners — of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen."

Bess said...

I hope someone doesn't'invite a pregnant woman to stay with them'. Where does she and and the baby go after birth? There are organizations that help pregnant women... During the pregnancy AND after... I think it is better, just to give money to an organization that helps.. Also, if one sees a homeless person, I would invite them into a restaurant and pay for their meal, rather than inviting them to your house. Bad idea to write to a con, unless you write from a p.o. Box, rather than use your home address. Just some thoughts.. Most of those are good ideas, though...

Keith Giles said...


I'm not sure why no one should ever invite a pregnant woman to live in their home? Why not?

What's the danger? That I might share the love of Jesus with her? That she might know that someone cares for her, and her unborn child? That I might develop a friendship with her and her baby? That my personal circle of "family" might widen just a bit?

I can understand the cautiousness of writing to random criminals, and inviting strange people into your home, and, of course, befriending a sex offender (especially if you have children of your own)...but what's the big deal about helping a pregnant woman in crisis?

Bess said...

I think it's a good idea, if one gets references on her. Maybe I have been watching too many Lifetime tv movies, where the woman moves in and then develops a crush on the husband.. And from there.... What happens after birth? Does the woman and baby continue to live with the family? Does the family politely give her a 'time line' for when she and baby take a 'heave ho.'? Or does the mom and baby live there indefinitely? Interesting points to ponder..