Social boundaries can be hard to cross. Maybe your first experience with boundaries came on the playground in elementary school. Maybe it was in the middle school cafeteria or audition room or athletic court. Maybe it occurred in a different area or at another stage in life. Being on one side or the other of a social boundary is something most of us have experienced.
As we grow into adulthood, the social boundaries do not get any easier to cross. The imaginary lines we draw in our minds can be as tough to cross as the Berlin Wall. Sometimes we treat the boundaries with the same level of fear as spiders or death. Yet God, through the work of the Holy Spirit, continues to nudge and whisper into our ears and hearts. And we can ignore, but that voice just does not go away if you are really working to live out your faith.
Maybe the nudge is to invite the new family who does not speak much English over for dinner. Maybe it is to stop and offer some food to the man with the sign. Maybe it is to be the first to welcome the couple who is different from everybody else in your congregation.
James encourages us to walk across that boundary, to quit judging others, and to get out of our comfort zones. If one is really working to grow in one’s faith, they feel the nudges and hear the whispers of the Spirit. If we can get outside our box and engage those across the boundary, then we begin to fulfill God’s command to truly love our neighbors as ourselves. That first step can be hard, but go ahead, take it.
Scripture reference: James 2: 1-13