Loving Your Neighbor

Scenarios
Child had a disagreement with a friend; child is struggling showing love towards others; child is arguing with siblings and parents often; child thinks too critically of others

Scripture Lesson
Throughout Christ’s’ ministry he was confronted by many who wanted answers to difficult questions. Some of the questions were sincere, but many were asked hoping they could trick him into saying something false. On one occasion, somebody asked Christ to tell him which was the most important commandment.

Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? (Matthew 22: 35-36)

Question
Before we hear his answer, what would you say if someone asked you this question?

Let’s see how Christ responded.

Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (Matthew 22:37-40)

Questions
-Why would God make these the greatest commandments?
-Who does he mean when he says “love thy neighbour”?
-What does Christ mean when he says, “On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets?”

Story
After a move across states we sent our daughter to her third elementary school in three years. She quickly made friends with a girl in her class named Amy. She would often come home with stories of the fun things they did together. One day, however, our daughter came home in tears because they had a falling apart and were no longer friends. She struggled the rest of the year with Amy. It was so stressful for our daughter that often times she begged us to let her stay home. So as you can imagine, it was a bit disheartening the following year when we found out Amy would be in her class again. We prayed often that our daughter would have a good school year and make lots of friends. We told her to keep a good attitude and to be nice and kind to Amy no matter what. We assured her she didn’t need to become “best friends” with her but she did need to strive to “love her neighbor.” As she performed small acts of kindness and respect, she and Amy naturally grew to become close friends again. Toward the end of the school year, I went to pick up our daughter from a birthday party. As the girls lined up to take a picture I saw her and Amy put their hands around each other’s necks. It was such a touching moment and I knew our prayers had been answered.

Application

Questions
-What are some ways we can love God?
-What are some ways we can love our neighbors?
-When you and your siblings argue or fight, what should you do?
-If there are some kids at school you don’t get along with, what can you do to love them?

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