The Lord has placed each one of us exactly where he wants us. He has placed our neighbours where he wants them too – near to you. It is no accident that our neighbours, friends, work colleagues and all our contacts are who they are. He wanted us to be in relationship with them. But why?
People aren’t so positive about church anymore. Put on events and people need persuading to attend. As for births, deaths and marriages the number of people who even think about the church has fallen through the floor.
So how do we reach out when we can’t rely on people just turning up.
We need to go back to the Bible’s teaching about how to engage with the world. Matthew 5 verses 1-15 helps us.
Jesus says ‘You are the salt of the earth’, ‘You are the light of the world.’ Those are staggering statements. Do listen to the sermon on this passage here.
Our challenge is to be amongst those we live, not hiding and not blending in, but living as salt and light. Here are a few questions to help us…
- How have your relationships with your neighbours changed during the pandemic?
- How could you introduce yourself to neighbours you don’t yet know?
- How could you deepen relationships with neighbours you do know?
- What will it look like to be salt and light as we relate to our neighbours?
This isn’t a quick process and it involves more than just going next door to tell them about Jesus – it is about living lives that spring from the beatitudes and relating to our neighbours in ways that are consistent with them. Of course we are always praying for and on the lookout for opportunities to speak about Jesus, but the starting point is getting to know our neighbours and loving them in practical ways.
How do we reach out when we aren’t in Christendom? All Christians are to go and be what Jesus has made us to be: salt and light.
How about filling out the love your neighbour card with the names of your neighbours and start praying for them…? You can download one just below.