"Love Thy Neighbor"

My Daughter taking food over to our neighbor’s.


 “Love Thy Neighbor”

“The foremost is, ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ “The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (NAS, Mark 12:28-31)

As I read this verse, I stand amazed at how important it is to our God to love our neighbors. It is actually second to loving Him! We get so caught up in our own lives, our routines, and our own needs, that many times we miss opportunities to serve God by serving others.

My Daughter helping a neighbor..so sweet.
Comfy in the Kitchen Delivers! 

I may have mentioned *laugh* that my favorite way to serve others is by preparing meals for them. I live in a very friendly neighborhood and can honestly say that I love my neighbors! I have been known to show up with meals, soup, sauce, dessert, etc..on many doorsteps in my neighborhood. In turn, my neighbors serve me in so many other different ways. My next door neighbor always has a spare egg, cup of sugar, or the exact cookie cutter I need. My neighbor across the street leads our women’s bible study and takes the most beautiful family photos, another neighbor across the street prays for me, and my neighbor behind my home co-leads bible studies with me in the Summer… We all take turns letting God work through us…it truly is an amazing thing when you obey “Love thy Neighbor” ….listening to God really does bless us beyond measure.

My daughter insisted on bringing flowers to her teacher

I would like to encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and share the gifts God has given you to show love to your neighbor…it could be a person at your gym, church, grocery clerk, or actual neighbor. One of my close friends told me that God placed a strong urge to cook a meal for a family who’s home she would pass on her way to work. She obeyed what God was telling her to do…the next day she very nervously knocked on the door with dinner in hand. When the woman answered she said “Hi, I am one of your neighbors, I just wanted to share God’s love with you today, I hope you will accept this meal I made for you.” It was very warmly and generously accepted. After she left, a wave of relief and comfort came upon her.  Speaking from my own experience,  I feel closest to the Lord when I am serving others on His behalf.

My hubby and me serving at the church
Bible study

My son and daughter helping me cook for the church.

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (NIV, John 13:34-35)

Much Love to you! ~Janelle

I am participating in living well wednesdays @ http://womenlivingwell-courtney.blogspot.com 



  1. Thanks for the post. This is something that I would love to do but lack the ideas for easy and budget friendly recipes. Would love to hear your ideas! Thank you:)

  2. Missy O'Brien says:

    Super post Janelle! I agree 100%! We have been feeding my neighbor dinner for the past 3 years or so! She is a single retired nurse that helps us out TREMENDOUSLY with watching our pets when we are gone and running over and sitting with the kids for a few minutes so I don't have to haul them out just to go pay a bill! I always have extra food and we love to share it with her!!!

  3. Janelle, oh to be your neighbor! I live in the country and the few neighbors we do have are very "standoffish". I do miss living in a neighborhood for that reason:-) I love how your getting the children involved and teaching them to serve this way.

  4. Love this! Thanks for the reminder!!! It's so true! And I think that some of this is lost in our day and age, don't you? People are so busy that it's hard for them to fit serving in. Thanks for constantly reminding! Just seeing your yummy recipes makes me want to bake something and bring it to someone!

    big hug to you!

  5. Janelle Nehrenz says:

    Tara, if you would like to serve by way of cooking I would suggest making something that you may already have ingredients for..I would recommend Snickerdoodles, peanutbutter cookies, banana bread, etc. You could also volunteer your time…I have watched my neighbors children while they go to the store, watched animals while they go on vacation, and have even just sent cards of encouragement. At first, you may seem out of your element, but God will bless you for it…you never know when someone really needs that added act of kindness in their lives. Missy, I am so happy to hear about how you serve your neighbor..what a blessing to you both!!! Suzanne, I would LOVE to have you as a neighbor!!!! I think you would have a calming effect on me…:) I could use a good cup of tea and fellowship in the middle of my crazy days! Gina, thank you for the encouragement…I know that you are busy serving your neighborhood religiously, I love that about you! Blessings, Janelle

  6. Courtney (Women Living Well) says:

    Oh Janelle – such a fun post to see your little one with her goodies in hand! I've been a witness to your hospitality and it is fun to receive and truly is inspiring!!! I wish I lived in your neighborhood too lol!!!

    I LOVED this post – though it's without a recipe it is packed with more – it feeds us spiritually! Thank you!

  7. Janelle Nehrenz says:

    Courtney, thank you my friend! 🙂 I SOOOO wish you lived in my neighborhood too!!!! Love ya!

  8. I love cooking for others! It's such a fun thing to do. And it's one small way I can serve in our ministry w/two little ones at home…I know I can almost always bring a dish or dessert to a church function. Thanks for the encouragement to reach out to our neighbors. We recently moved so we don't know very many people in our immediate area.

  9. What a wonderful suggestion. It is sad how few neighbors I know…and I live in a subdivision. This would be a great way to serve my neighbors…and get to know them!


  10. Janelle Nehrenz says:

    Becky and Valerie, I will be praying that you can reach out to your neighbors! It is so much fun to be the "doer of God's word" …He sometimes takes us out of our element, but it feels so refreshing to lean on him!!! LOVE that you are willing to do this…keep me updated on how it goes! Everyone of us can use daily encouragement, I am sure your kindness will be well received…God Bless you!!!

  11. Traci Michele says:

    Great thoughts! Following you now 🙂

    <3 Traci @ Ordinary Inspirations

  12. Wonderful post Janelle! We went around to our neighbors over the holidays with Friendship Bread loaves in hand and it was warmly received by all but one. My girls were the ones handing them out and it was so neat to see how their faces lit up right along with the neighbors' face! 🙂 Thank you for the gentle reminder that serving should be throughout the year to our neighbors. 2011 will be a more intentional year for us!

  13. Janelle Nehrenz says:

    Thanks Traci! Susan….what a beautiful thing to do for your neighbors, I love it!!!! I'm so sorry about the one…that is the one to be praying for this year though 🙂 We have a neighbor at our office building like that, God has put love in my heart for him…but he doesn't like us much, lol! I still give him chocolates at Christmas and he mumbles 🙂 We never know the cross others are carrying…Just know you are pleasing God..(and it sounds like MANY neighbors! Horray!!!!!)

  14. Hi Janelle
    I hopped over from Women Living Well. Love this post and I want to do a better job of serving. It is definitely biblical!!
    Thanks for sharing,

  15. Janelle Nehrenz says:

    Hi Cyndi! God Bless you for being motivated to serve for the Lord! Wohoo! Love it!

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