You’ll Have to Ask My Neighbor
Yesterday, a clergy friend of mine stopped me to say “Thank You” to Wesley for ministering to our grieving community at John Horn’s memorial service. He said the way we opened up the building to the community and the love people felt inside bore witness to Jesus’ love for us all. Even the people who sat in the lobby (where he sat) felt they were taken care of. Folks, I don’t know about you, to me that spoke volumes about the work of Christ at Wesley.
A prominent business person here in Greenville approached me at a luncheon a few hours ago (as I write this). He recounted how he grew up Methodist and happened to have married a Baptist girl, “I go to church where I do because I like being married.” He has attended Wesley for a few funerals and other events. He said, “I want to tell you the people I know at your church are some of the best people our community has. You welcome everyone, this whole community at all kinds of occasions, wow… You’re a good preacher too. Wesley does so much for the community. Keep it up.”
The story goes… An outsider approached an Amish farmer and asked if he was a Christian. The Farmer replied, “You’ll have to ask my neighbor.”
When we talk about being followers of Jesus Christ it is important that Jesus told his followers in John 13:35: “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” How we love people speaks louder than our creeds, our doctrines, sermons or songs.
So who is our neighbor? I caution us about drawing any lines on that question… after all every time someone asked that question with an eye towards leaving someone out, Jesus told a parable which included more than the audience could have imagined. I believe it is safe to say, anyone we encounter should be considered our neighbor.
Thank you for your generosity!
Chris Yost [email protected]