In an authentic pursuit to love your neighbor, you should find yourself taking steps to move from Stranger → Acquaintance → Friend.¹
Those who live out radically ordinary hospitality see their homes not as theirs at all but as God’s gift to use for the furtherance of his kingdom. They open doors; they seek out the underprivileged. They know that the gospel comes with a house key. (Rosaria Butterfield)
PURSUE A RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR NEIGHBOR
- Break the ice with casual conversation. Ask simple questions that show interest in them (family, job, hobbies, etc.)
- Invite them into your home for a meal, coffee + desert, to the park for a kids play date, etc.
- Invite them over to a backyard BBQ or watch a sporting event with some of your church friends
- Ask more personal questions about family background, goals, spiritual beliefs, etc.
DO GOOD FOR YOUR NEIGHBOR
To display the love of God revealed in Jesus Christ, we must cultivate genuine relationships that are built on a concern for fellow human beings. Demonstrating the love of Jesus in real life everyday practical ways is an essential part of loving your neighbor.
- Offer to help out with yard work, house projects, pets, etc.
- Give gifts on special days (anniversary, birthday, etc.)
- Cook meals for them during their busy times
- Deliver homemade baked goods to them periodically
- 10 Things You Should Know about Christian Hospitality – by Rosaria Butterfield
- Visit www.howtoloveyourneighbor.com for helpful reminders and creative insights on how to love your neighbor … without being weird!
- The Art of Neighboring: Building Genuine Relationships Right Outside Your Door (Jay Pathak & Dave Runyon)
¹ Pathak, Jay and Runyon, Dave. The Art of Neighboring: Building Genuine Relationships Right Outside Your Door, p 75.