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Summary: Make a Friend -- Be A Friend -- Bring A Friend To Christ. Loving your neighbor is at the heart .of making a Friend.You're not living if you're not loving. You Shall Love!

For Those not familiar with an Anglican Service there are four Scripture readings Prior to the Message. Today's readings are Deuteronomy 34:1-12; Psalm 90; 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8; Matthew 22:34-46.

It has been said .....that love...... may not make the world go around, .....but it sure makes the trip .....worthwhile.

A French Novelist and Poet, (Arsene Houssaye) wrote, ....."Tell me whom you love .....and I will tell you..... who you are

.

Jesus opened our eyes to the true nature of love..... in our Gospel Reading today: BIBLE "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments." END

Even The first Book of the Scriptures.... Genesis speaks of Love ..... that God, ....in His love, .....created mankind.

(Slow) Life..... does not precede love ..... love precedes life! REPEAT

In His Love .... God Created Mankind.

In our text.... Jesus .....speaks of three directions of love:....love toward God.......love toward others....

....and love toward self.

Beloved Our love for God ....Must take priority..... over everything ....in life.

The amount of time you spend with God......being in his presence..... speaking with him in prayer ....is a reflection ..... (Slow) of how much .....you love him.

The amount of time you spend reading his Holy Word ..... is a reflection.... of how much .....you love Him.

Our lives should yearn.... To be in the presence of our heavenly father. (Long Pause)

A little boy ...entered the family room ....after dinner.

His dad .... weary .....from a hard day at work......had the recliner kicked back ......and was reading the paper.

The little boy ....inched up beside his Dad ...and said, ....."Daddy,.... I love you."

"I love you too, son," .....the father replied, ......... ..... Then He continued reading the paper.

But this didn't satisfy the boy, .....so he went around .... To the other side of the chair .....and began rubbing his daddy's arm...... "Daddy, .....I love you,".

And with the slightest amount of impatience in his voice, .....the father again said, ....."I love you, too son."

But still ....the little one .....was not satisfied.

Suddenly ....the little boy came crashing through the newspaper ....onto his father's chest, ......reaching his little arms as far around his dad.... as he could, .....and said, ....."Daddy, I love you ......and I've just got to do something ....about it." (Pause)

Sometimes..... we too need to be reminded ....how important ......that all giving love is ...... not only to those who receive it..... but to those who give it.

Beloved.....You're not living ..... if you're not loving.

Isn't it time to love our heavenly father enough... .....that we just have to do something .....about it.

It is time beloved... It is time to start loving.

The love of God .....is what ...gave us life.... in creation.

The love of God .....is what sought us out .....and offers us salvation ....through faith ...in Christ Jesus.

Jesus taught ....that if love is to be fully manifested .....we must love God first, .....Others second, ....and self Last.

Yet, ....Far too many of us .....have got it completely backwards!

Beloved ...... The Scriptures Speak with authority .....The Scriptures speak with Truth.

If we love God,..... then and only then .....will our love .....grow.

And this Love of God .....supernaturally produces a love for others ..... and also for ourselves.

(Slow) In fact, ....if we love God most, ..... we will love others best. REPEAT

The theologian .....C.S. Lewis put it this way, ......."When I have learned to love God better than my earthly dearest, .... I shall love my earthly dearest .....better .....than I do now."

Our love for God..... inescapably motivates us ....to love others ...... to love our neighbors.

But, it can be hard .....to love everyone.... at times. (Pause)

An elderly couple .....had a neighbor across the street .....who would not.....for some reason.....give them ......the time of day.

But ....That did not stop them ......from cheerfully saying:"Hi!" .....every time the neighbor.... was in his yard.

One day a little boy asked the couple,...... "Why do you all bother to say "hi".... to that guy?

He never even looks your way. .....He never says "hi" back!"

The elderly couple answered...very matter of fact...no explanations .... no complaints:..... "Because we are Christians." (Pause)

We are called to love our neighbor ...... Even if they do not reciprocate.... in kind.

I am sure .....many of you have heard these words before.

They are burned into my very soul ....and make loving my neighbor ..... so much easier.

Make a Friend -- Be A Friend -- Bring A Friend To Christ.

Loving your neighbor .....is at the heart ....of making a Friend.

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