N: Neighborly Nancy. Luke 10:27–“He answered, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'” (NIV)
Merriam-Webster Dictionary definition of neighborly:
- Of, relating to, or characteristic of congenial (friendly) neighbors
- Helpful and friendly
- Familiar and helpful: friendly
Phrases often used with the word neighbor:
- Neighboring tone
- Neighbor note
- Neighbor like
- Neighborly (brotherly) love
- Love your neighbor as yourself
- Forgive your neighbor as Christ forgives you
- Neighborly way
N: Neighborly Nancy’s Story:
“According to Nancy, a weather forecaster for a local TV station, she predicted that severe thunder storms were on the horizon for that afternoon and the next 2-3 days. Since most of the surrounding area where she lived consisted of farms, she had hoped her prediction would help them to prepare beforehand for the severe weather ahead.
After leaving the TV station enroute to her home, she noticed dark clouds hanging low in the distance ahead of her. It looked like the thunder storms were right on schedule and she hoped to reach home before the rain began.
As she passed one of her neighbor’s farms, she noticed that one of his horses had gotten out of the fence–no doubt frightened at hearing the clash of thunder which made him run down the hill toward the road. Nancy immediately stopped her car so she could use her phone to call her neighbor and let him know about the horse, but there was no service.
Since Nancy had experience working with horses–she helped on Saturdays with the children’s horse-riding therapy group at the Bar Ranch near her home–she began talking with the horse and he started to calm down. Within a few minutes, she noticed that her neighbor and one of his hands came riding over the hill to rescue the horse. Puzzled, Nancy wondered how he knew about the run-away horse. He thanked Nancy for helping to keep him calm until they could get there, and told her that another neighbor noticed the frightened horse running off and alerted the farmer. Nancy stopped at the right time to keep the horse calm until he got there.”
In Romans 13:10, it says, “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” (NIV) Nancy was a prime example of someone who honored her neighbor above herself by stopping to help her neighbor’s horse. She did it without question and wanted to help the frightened animal.
In Romans 15:2, it says, “Each of us should please his neighbor for his good to build him up.” (NIV) Nancy was willing to take the time at the end of her busy, tired day to stop and help her neighbor’s animal.
We may or may not have an opportunity to help our neighbor with a frightened horse, but God gives us other ways in which to help our neighbors–by being kind, showing love to one another in our words and actions, and forgiving one another as Christ has done to us.
Let us be the kind of neighbor that shows love in our “actions and deeds” so that others can depend on us for help and support whenever they need a helping hand.