When we love everybody, we change the world. One thing that easily prevents us from loving everybody is the temptation to judge and criticize others—expecting the worst of others instead of believing the best about them. In 1 Corinthians 13:7, Paul writes out some words of wisdom to a believing congregation who at the first sign of a problem, no matter how small, immediately believe the worst about another person. Pray today that God will help you see and believe the best in the people you interact with, and show love by sharing a random act of kindness towards them.


The whole world will change as our worlds change and our worlds—our spheres of influence—will change as we love people well. Part of loving people well is getting to know them and their stories. Is there someone in your sphere of influence that comes from a different culture or way of life? Sit down with them at lunch and humbly ask them about their personal history or culture and just listen. Afterward, take time to read over 1 Peter 3:8 and pray a blessing over that person. In addition, if you haven’t gotten a chance to sign up for the Compassion Experience yet, check it out here.


We are commanded in Matthew 22:39 to ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” However, like the Jewish lawyer in Luke 10:29, many of us may ask the question: WHO IS MY NEIGHBOR? Following that verse, Jesus uses the Parable of the Good Samaritan to answer his question through the story of someone in proximity to potential ‘neighbors’ passing by. Think of those in proximity to your physical home, especially as you see them Trick-Or-Treating around the area tonight. Ask yourself today, “How can I show compassionate love and mercy to people right here in my neighborhood?” Take time today to pray that God will open your heart and eyes for ways to love where you live.


1 Timothy 2:1 guides us to . . . “pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them.” This past Sunday at church, we were given Neighborhood Block Maps to note who our neighbors are. If you weren’t here on Sunday, you can create one of your own or pick one up this next week. If you have yours nearby, go ahead and take time out to pray intentionally for each name on your map. Make sure your map is in a place where you’ll remember to keep them in your thoughts and prayers—and maybe someday soon you can take a courageous step to invite them to church with you!


We don’t love our neighbors in order to change them. We love our neighbors because we have been changed. Think about the ways your life has been changed through your personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Make a list of God’s blessings in your life in regard to relationships, education, basic needs, resources, and abilities. Thank God for those things. Pray a prayer based the words in Psalm 86:15 and invite God to help your life reflect those same things in and for your neighbors.

Sunday, October 28, 2018 by Steve Cochran