How To Love Strangers?

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We pass by people we don’t know every day

In Luke 10, Jesus tells a story about a man who was attacked and left for dead on the side of the road. A priest saw the man and crossed the road to avoid him. Another person who worked in the Temple did the same thing. But, a Samaritan—who was despised by many —saw the man and went above and beyond to help him.

We don’t want to be inconvenienced

We’re often tempted to overlook the average person, because we don’t want to be inconvenienced, or we don’t think we can make a difference. In order to love the people we don’t know, we’ll need to pray daily and ask God for eyes to see people who need a touch from Him.

Some ways to show love to people we don’t know:

  • Do one small thing. When you come across people, you have no idea what is happening in their lives. They may be having the best day, or they may have just received the worst news of their life. Maybe God allows us to notice the mom with misbehaving children at the store, or we notice a man who seems to have very little. A simple smile or a small gift from us could make their day.
  • Have eyes to see. We encounter so many people we don’t know each day—in stores, restaurants, at church, and a variety of other places. Even though we may not have a personal relationship with them, we can still love them as our neighbor. Showing kindness to strangers is a tremendous form of service.

There truly are countless ways to love the neighbors we don’t know. In fact, this may be one of the most truly genuine things we do, because if we don’t know people and we choose to love them practically, they’ll never be able to repay us. Maybe you pay for the coffee of the person in line behind you, donate blood that will benefit those who are chronically ill, or provide food for someone in another country. These simple acts are wonderful ways that we can love the people we don’t know.

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