#717 - Strangers Experienced Tragedy
Volume 2 - Prayers to Love Our Neighbor
Dear Father, each of the eight billion people in this world could have been a close friend if circumstances had been different. I could have been born into their neighborhood in Atlanta, Rio De Janeiro, Berlin, Rome, Cairo, Johannesburg, Hong Kong, or Tokyo. Every person in the world is potentially my future friend as well. We could meet at a conference, on a plane, at a supermarket checkout, or in a homeless shelter. We could exchange emails or speak on the phone. There is something in every person that I could find likeable. There is at least one area of mutual interest where I can connect with each person. Every person wants to be loved, listened to, treated compassionately, respected, and appreciated. The fruits of the Holy Spirit enable me to treat people that way. In other words, walking with the Lord, I could have a friendship with any person on the globe if time and circumstance permitted. War. Famine. Hurricane. Tornado. Traffic accident. Airplane crash. Earthquake. Crime. Plague. Murder. When I hear on the news that strangers have experienced a tragedy or a catastrophe, my heart should break for their grieving friends and family. Under a separate set of circumstances, I might be one of those grieving friends and family. Father, You have given us the capacity to sympathize with strangers in crisis to a degree we have never understood. When we hear of tragedies in the news, I can imagine myself as a friend of the victims. It can move me to grief because You have given me the ability to love my neighbor, even those who die in accidents on the other side of the globe. Father, keep working on my heart. I want to love You, and strangers in need, with all my heart, soul, and mind. Amen.
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