NOT ENOUGH “I AM”

love-your-neighbor

BY STEVE DUNN

We live in a self-centered and selfish age. Nowhere is that more obvious than when it comes to the need for people to accept responsibility for outcomes that benefit the community.  Think of the many times that people will storm the barricades because they have been inconvenienced or feel threatened by someone who they have chosen to ignore finally gets justice.  Think of the times we clamor to hold down the cost of government but scream bloody murder because our pet project will not be funded.  We will support the devil if he supports our personal prejudice but demonize others who would choose to call the devil, “the devil.”

For those of our community who have chosen an “i-pad” or “i-phone” or “i-pod” lifestyle, we have already declared an “I’ve gotten a me” bias in our lives which is easily (and often subtly) translated into an “don’t tread on me” approach to our neighbors.  To others who believe that only their values deserve the support of law, they “don’t tread on me” attitude begins to see neighbors as enemies to be dispatched or deported to some place where they won’t threaten us.

The Bible teaches an idea that is fundamental to life and in many cultures has a collary known as the Golden Rule.  After reminding us that loving God with all of our being is the First Commandment, Jesus declares, “The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.” (Mark 12.31 NLT)  In fact Christians are taught that love of God is inseparable from loving our brothers. “Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.” – I John 4.20

One of the names of God is “I  Am.”  Literally, He is uniquely who He is. There is none like him.  Those who follow Christ affirm that foundation.

So could I suggest that the basic problem we have is that there is too much “I” in our lives and not enough “I Am?”

Think about it.

© 2016 by Stephen L. Dunn.  You have permission to reprint this provided it is unchanged, proper authorship is cited, it is in a publication not for sale, and a link is provided to this site or to www.drstevedunn.com. For all other uses, contact Steve at sdunnpastor@gmail.com 

LoveThyNeighborAsThyself

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