“The Wednesday Word” Devotional & Podcast
We thought it would be a great idea to have a mid-week recap & refresh of Pastor David’s Sunday sermon. Let’s make sure that we are learning all we can from them!
Pastor David’s Wednesday devotional will be related to the Sunday sermon in some way. It could be an expansion on a theme, a different twist, or some kind of content related to Sunday’s sermon. Various staff members and parishioners will gather to discuss the devotional and how it relates to our lives and maybe give some practical application of the word.
You can listen to the audio version in your car, while doing housework, during your workout, or whenever is most convenient for you. We want you to be able to access it at any time that is the right time for you to have a few minutes to read and reflect on it.
Pastor David’s devotional for January 12, 2022
25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a]; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
An expert in the law asked Jesus “who is my neighbor?” Given that the expert had just quoted scriptures about love, we know the expert’s concern was not “who to love.” The expert’s concern was “who do I NOT have to love?” And we know why. Most of us draw the line somewhere. The expert in the law wanted to know where Jesus was willing to draw the line. Of course, Jesus did not draw a line—he crossed lines others drew to welcome all into the Family of God. And to shock the expert in the law into understanding, Jesus told the parable of the Good Samaritan, using a Samaritan as the example to follow, and Samaritans were on the wrong side of the religious leader’s line! For Christians, one of the points of the story is simple: Love is not something we can justify for some but not for others. We who are becoming love act out of love toward all the people we encounter. While it may be hard for the world to understand, when it comes to living a Christian life there are no lines!
Bob Goff, in his book “Everybody Always” says of Christians that we are “Becoming Love.” What does this phrase mean to you?
In the video clip I used to start my sermon last Sunday, Bob Goff talked about the difference between being invited and being welcomed. He said we all have been invited to things where we ended up not feeling very welcome. What does being “Welcomed” mean to you?
Welcoming another person into our lives is one of the ways we express love. This week, we are focusing on loving people who live in our proximity—people in our neighborhood. During my sermon, I told the story of a man in a previous neighborhood named Wayne. Over the course of several years, Wayne and I went from being strangers, and people with very little in common, to friends. Think back over your life. What story can you share about a neighbor who became a friend? Whether that friendship continues to this day or not, what do you think your friendship meant to your neighbor? What did it mean to you?
Do you have a story about someone in your neighborhood offering extravagant love to others? What are ways you have tried to express love for the people in your neighborhood?
In my neighborhood I see my neighbors often. I see them walking their dogs, going to the mailbox, washing their cars, taking the garbage can to the road, bringing in groceries, playing with children—you get the idea. I see them often. Since we are new in our neighborhood, we are still trying to connect with our neighbors—to get to know them. What advice can you offer us? What are things you have done, or ideas you have, for us to begin to welcome people into our lives?
Jesus responded to the legal expert’s question “who is my neighbor” by telling the story of a man who simply acted like a neighbor—helping a person he encountered in their time of need. Jesus ended the story by telling his followers to “go and do likewise.” As his followers, we are to welcome people into our lives by demonstrating our commitment to their well-being. It makes a difference in people’s lives—it makes a difference in our lives too. Remember—you are becoming love! How can you give witness to this reality today? God bless you,
Podcast & Sermon Video Links
“Love Where You Live” Sermon Video