Neighborhood as Family

Friday is for Heart Song’s

[UPDATE: My brother in South Carolina has probably been cutting his lawn for awhile but things are just starting to green up here. But that reminds me of a post from a few years ago and I would love to get some more ideas from my readers so here’s a short post from September of 2012 to help all of us express our love and care for our neighbors in more practical and tangible ways.]

I was mowing the lawn when the thought came. “What if we viewed our neighborhood as our family? How would it change the way we interacted with them?”

I know some of us don’t have very healthy families, but let’s give it a try. Take 5 minutes and brainstorm and think about it. Here’s some questions to prime the pump of your mind:

  • “If my neighborhood was my family, how would I interact with it / them on a daily basis?
  • “What would holidays look like if I treated my neighbors like family?”
  • “What would my interaction with my neighbor’s need be like if, when they had a crisis, I treated them like family?”

Think of five ways that your relationship with your neighbors would change. Share them here with the 2,000 subscribers to the blog. 


4 thoughts on “Neighborhood as Family

  1. This one came in through an email.

    This is one of the best ways to help us in obeying the commandment “Love your neighbor as you love yourself”. Thanks, I will not try that but I will do it because I have faith in it. Trying is not faith as one would give up when they face a small obstacle in trying this.

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  2. My husband and I ( in the past) gave Christmas gifts to the family across the street….well it was a single father raising three children and he was an alcoholic ( recovering) my husband went for coffee with him many, many times even though my husband was a teacher and this man was a truck driver….. The young boy in the family came to Youth Group at Trinity because I brought him and later when he was being sentence to youth corrections in St. Charles…..persons from Trinity and myself were there to support at the courtroom.

    My family also welcomed another neighbor into our home on Christmas Day many years ago. This was a little girl about 8 years old and she had gone to church and came back home and my daughter and son in law were there at our house for dinner with Grand baby and we welcomed the little girl because she wanted to come ……the little girl’s mother doesn’t want her and allows for her to be adopted and so she is adopted by her Great Grandmother and lives with her and also her uncle.
    ( It is sad that she no longer attends church and is with the wrong crowd now !! 😦 )

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    1. Keep it up. It rips your heart out when these things happen, but you don’t know when seeds spread in these situations eventual spring up to produce new life.

      At the same time, one of the things that we need to evaluate in my experience is THE CLARITY OF OUR GOSPEL in all of these relational activities. Conversations, loving care, involvement in programs , invitations into homes — these are all good, great actually — but often times we never get to the gospel itself. We never make the gospel clear.

      We know that the kindnesses will almost always be received well and so we are active in doing them. But by the same token, we know that the gospel verities, might not be received well and might cause the person we are caring for to reject us, or shut down, or become awkward around us, so we say nothing for years sometimes, hoping that our kindness will lead to some questions. We need to be bolder if we are to be truly faithful to Christ.

      Thanks for sharing your story. Keep it up and pray for boldness and clarity. Pray it for me too.

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