In today’s world, it is often the case that we have different viewpoints or opinions from those around us. Sometimes it feels as though it’s even expected to disagree socially, politically, or really on anything. It can be difficult to find common ground and even more challenging to turn the other cheek.
In these times I am often reminded of what Jesus says in Matthew 22:34-40. We are called to love our neighbor as ourselves. The saying "love your neighbor" is commonplace in the world around us today, but what does it really mean?
We know that love is patient, kind, content, humble, selfless, forgiving, joyful, protective, trusting, hopeful, consistent, and it never fails. Love is putting others before ourselves. So, what does that look like in today’s world? It might look different for each person, but at SouthSide Youth Outreach it means building strong, young lives. While loving one another unconditionally can be a challenging task, I’ve learned that it is something SouthSide Youth Outreach excels at. As a RISE After School teacher here at SSYO, I get a front row seat to the loving actions of such a committed staff.
It is not uncommon to walk around the playground at free time and hear a dispute. Whether it be over what somebody said or whose turn it is on the swing, these disagreements are common. While frequent, we always handle these situations the same way: with love, patience, and understanding. It is our commitment to build strong, young lives and by showing these kids that they are loved even in the midst of making difficult decisions, I believe we are making a difference.
I just want to thank each of our partners and all you do for us. The love you show us translates into the love we show the kids, which results in the kids learning how to love. We could never do what we do without your unwavering support. You love us well! Thank you all!