Church sanctuary rtsa

“Love your neighbor as yourself,” Mark 12:31.

I have been thinking and reflecting on the power of love. What does it mean to truly love our neighbor as we love ourselves? How do we learn to do that each and every day? A few key points stand out.

First of all, we have to learn to love ourselves. Otherwise loving our neighbor in the same way we love ourselves would not be loving at all. When I contemplate loving ourselves, I often reflect on a mirror I saw when I visited the Holy Land. Around the edges of the mirror was inscribed, “Behold the image of God.” It was a reference to Genesis 1:27, which states that we are made in the image of God. It was designed so that every time you looked at yourself in the mirror, you would be reminded that you are made in the image of God.

I like to find practical ways to help take steps in life. For instance, did you know that you can use dry erase markers to write on mirrors? What if we all wrote on our mirrors, “Behold, God’s amazingly loved child!” or “Behold, the image of God!” Then every time we look at ourselves in the mirror we would reflect on how much we are loved and amazing. Maybe then we could take the baby steps in faith to begin to love ourselves.

In a similar way, let’s try to love our neighbors. First things first, our neighbors are not just those who live next door or down the block. Our neighbors are all those in our community. I want to encourage you to take a baby step in faith to try to love your neighbors more. Try putting a sticky note on your door, by your keys, or even on the steering wheel of your car. Write on it, “love God’s children.” Then when you leave your home you are reminded to love your neighbors, God’s beloved children.

Too often, I think we make great ambitions hard to live out each day. If we can find simple ways to remind ourselves to take a baby step in love, each day we can learn how to love our neighbor as ourselves a little bit more.

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