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Love your Neighbour (6 of 6)

Mike Connell

Page 2 of 10
You'll find that our experiences of God are vitally connected also to our experiences with people, and how we interact and work with people. Notice what it says here; whoever has this world's goods and sees his brother in need and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? Notice the key issue here, is seeing someone in need. Now there are more needs than you can minister to, so take a break. You don't have to minister to every need there is. You're not responsible to meet every need. Even Jesus didn't meet every need. He walked in and out of the temple week by week, and nevertheless there was a cripple there. He never healed that cripple. He was motivated and directed by an inspiration from His Father. Nevertheless, He met needs, so if anyone sees his brother in need. Most time when we see someone in need we say well, someone ought to do something about that, that's wrong. Someone ought to do something about that. Actually, you're right. The someone who ought to do something about it is you, because you have seen the need. Well I don't know what to do, I don't know quite what to do. Well there's always something we can do.

We're not required to meet everyone's needs. We're not required to meet all of their needs. What we are required is, to not shut up our heart when we see a person in need. To shut up your heart means to wall yourself off. One of the problems with TV and exposure to TV, if you watch a lot of TV, if you see a lot of world news and the violence and the destruction and all the difficulties and things that happen to people, or if you watch too much violence on TV, you watch too many games where people are being killed and things like that, what happens is you become a spectator and your heart becomes hardened. You can look at need and not be touched. So the Bible tells us that love, the love God is looking for, is not just about lifting our hands in worship. It goes beyond that. It actually overflows where you see someone with a need, you begin to start to take initiative to connect with the person and help them.

Notice what it says; if you see the brother in need, and you have something that can supply that need, and you shut your heart up, then how can you say that the love of God is manifesting in your life? Isn't that interesting? I've been to meetings, and I've experienced deeply the love of God, and felt full of the love of God, but at the end it comes down to this. When you see someone in need, will you connect with them, and then begin to manifest practically some answers to the problems they have? Very clear - don't shut up our heart against a brother in need. The key issue is shutting up the heart. It's important for us to maintain good works. In Titus, it tells us in the last chapter of Titus, it says be careful to maintain good works, in order that you be fruitful. In other words, God wants us to ensure that we're not just talk, we actually on the ground level are doing things that change the lives of those around us. Be careful to maintain good works. Be careful to be involved doing things. Isn't that interesting?

You say oh well, you know, it's not all about good works, it's about intimacy. Intimacy results in good works. Jesus was intimate with the Father, and He abounded in good works to people. He was anointed by the Holy Spirit. Notice what it says, Acts 10:38, He was anointed by the Holy Spirit, and He went around doing good, healing all who were oppressed of the devil. So our love, our relationship, our intimacy with the Father is to lead us to overflow and connect with people. The interesting thing about that of course is, our connections with people are where the reality substance, and the maturity of our Christian life is revealed, so spiritual experiences need to be connected to practical action. You see Isaiah had an encounter with heaven, saw the throne of God, the glory of God, heard the angels saw and felt and experienced heaven. Then coming out of that encounter he captured the heart of God, whom shall we send? He said Lord, send me, I want to be part of the answer in meeting the needs of people.