Jesus answered, “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
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Our Jewish brothers and sisters know these words. They heard these teachings by their parents and by their teachers at the synagogue. They were taught it in the Hebrew language of their ancestors and in their own language. The teachings of a faith take hold in a variety of ways. It often starts with words, words repeated, words heard. And as words seep into our souls, the words are enfleshed with blood and muscle, living tissue and then impulsed with a purpose. Words matter. Words of hate can become deadly actions. Words of love can become life-giving service. Words alone cannot make the world a better place for our neighbor. Christ is the word of love wrapped in blood and muscle with a soul for service. Let's follow. Let's route out the words that have no place in our hearts, our homes or our neighborhoods. Let's make this world better for our neighbor, all of them.
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Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me. Amen