Our scripture this morning is Luke 6:32-36.

If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to be repaid, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, so that they may be repaid in full. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to ungrateful and evil people. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

Jesus explains that doing good to those who are good to you isn’t all there is to being His follower. He tells us “even sinners love those who love them”. To share Christ’s love as He commanded we must love each other without distinction or exclusion.

One of the most important teachings here is that we are to love “expecting nothing back”. If we only do good in order to be seen or to reap rewards, we are not loving as Jesus taught. He showed us how to minister to even those considered outcasts.

If we look at ourselves honestly, we are all outcasts – fallen creatures whose sin has separated them from the blessing God intended at our creation. However, our loving Lord is still waiting for us to return in repentance, ready to welcome us back into relationship. We must do the same for all our brothers and sisters.

Heavenly Father, we know we are hard to love, but You love us just the same. Bless us to share the joy of our connection with You with all the world. Amen.

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