When love is not an either/or proposition


Next door neighbor.

Around the corner neighbor.

Church neighbor.

Grocery store clerk neighbor.

Construction worker neighbor.

Homeless neighbor.

Gainfully employed neighbor.

Beautiful neighbor.

Uncomfortable neighbor.

Incarcerated neighbor.

Non-English speaking neighbor.


I woke this morning with a mind overflowing with words to write.

Full-time writing is not my calling.   I only write publicly when I am filled to the brim with thoughts and words that I must share.

My calling prods me to talk about a few of my neighbors.   The work here in Honduras requires an open discussion of neighbor.

In the talking and discussing together about neighbors, many on US soil declare, "People are starving in the US, people are poor in the US... we must take care of our own before we take care of others.  I cannot help you take care of Hondurans."

I understand this mindset, I really do.    This mindset was mine many, many years ago when I only held hands with my closest neighbors.     This mindset is not mine today when my hands are eager to join hands with whomever wants to work to bring light in hard places... some of the hardest of places.

Many who are reading this today love Jesus and live to follow His example.   

I wonder, did Jesus only love his next-door neighbor?   Did Jesus only help the neighbor who looked like Him?    Did Jesus make sure all neighbors in Bethlehem were comfortable before He helped the next town over?   Did Jesus tell His followers to go only to Jerusalem and surrounding counties?

Or did He really say be my witnesses all the way to the very ends of the earth?

Loving is not an EITHER/OR proposition... Loving is an AND commitment. 

We are to love here and we are to love there.   We are to help here and we are to help there.  We are to be a reflection of His love here and a reflection of His love there.

We must see the wealthy businesswoman and the migrant worker as equally worthy of God's love and ours.

I ask myself today ... where are my blind spots in relation to loving, caring, helping, raising my voice?   What can I do or refrain from doing today that would better reflect God's international love?

I ask you today... are you courageous enough to look for blind spots?  To ask questions?  To be curious about others?   To refrain from posting things that truly may not be loving to your neighbor? 

Let's grab hands today and really look around.    And let's celebrate together as we begin to see Jesus people looking more like Jesus.


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