The most important commandment in the Old Testament didn't make the top ten, though it lends itself to an interpretation that makes it #1 even there. Seeing "The Lord Thy God" in each of our neighbors would put "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" in the place of, as Jesus would say, loving our neighbors as we love ourselves, and as the most important commandment puts it, "Thou shalt not remove thy neighbor's landmark." Honor thy neighbor's right to themselves and to all that belongs to them! Do not mind thy neighbor's business! Do not violate thy neighbor's boundaries! Do not invade thy neighbor's sacred space! Do not denigrate thy neighbor in any way! Respect thy neighbor as thou desireth to be respected! Know where you stop and your neighbor starts and do not step over the line! How may ways did Jesus say that? He made it the central element in what he had to say. Everything comes down to seeing our neighbor as equal to us in every way. And to seeing everyone as our neighbor. And everyone is Every. Single. One. We are to be everyone's neighbor, treating them all as though they are our neighbor. Why is this hard? Why is it not being done?
We do not receive the help we need. And if it is offered, it isn't what we have in mind. Given the choice, do you go for feeling better or getting better? When the treatment is worse than the disease-- or worse than the symptoms-- what do we do? Where do we go with the pain of damned if we do and damned if we don't? With the agony of endless agony? In the meantime, what? When there is no balm in Gilead, where do we go for relief from our anguish? For alleviation from our pain? Where do we find what we need to do what needs to be done about any of it? Therapy is found in the damnedest places. The dairy barn at the Louisiana Central Hospital brought people back to life by giving them cows to milk and feed, to pasture and tend. What does a cow have to do with our problems? Who would ever think, "A cow is just what I need"? How long would a physician last who prescribed a cow to care for to those seeking solace for the burdens they bear? Don't disparage cows! Seek out their equivalent in your own time and place! You who have needs, lend yourself to the service of that which has need of you! You who languish for a lack of help, provide help to that which languishes for what you have to offer! Be good for someone, some thing! The world will shift on its axis, reorient itself in its orbit. All because you dared to love a cow!