“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”
Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22:36-40
I am so grateful for the Savior who has died for me! And you know what, Jesus died for “my neighbor” as well! The neighbor who may not look like me. The one who hasn’t made the best decisions and his life is not very “holy”. The family member who has rejected me because of of my love for Christ. The one who needs the love of God just as much as I did before he saved me!
I am reminded of the Amish school shooting that took place in Pennsylvania back in 2006. Six innocent little girls were shot and killed that day and six more injured. The response of the Amish community is a lesson in grace and forgiveness for all of us. The Amish community explained at the time:
“I don’t think there’s anybody here that wants to do anything but forgive and not only reach out to those who have suffered a loss in that way but to reach out to the family of the man who committed these acts.“
Before the end of that terrible day the Amish community comforted the wife and family of the shooter and extended forgiveness to them. They also set up a charitable fund for the family of the shooter and many members of the Amish community attended the shooters funeral. What an incredible example of loving your neighbor!
As I continue on this path of God’s grace, I realize more and more that love is the key. Jesus loved us so much that he died for us and the best witness to a dying world is the love we have for others even when it doesn’t make sense.
And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13