|ps from ps:|
A priest, a Levite and a Samaritan walked into a bar. No wait, they walked down a road.
At least, that’s what the story in Luke 11 tells us. Three different people walking down the same road seeing the same hurting person. Three people – two church types and one culturally outcast by the church. And only one helps out. And splicer alert – it’s not the church guys.
The story is called the Good Samaritan. But I could come up with a few other names:
“Two dopes and one good human”
“Strike two for the church; home run for unchurched”
“Why did the Samaritan cross the road? To get to the other side and love someone”
OK, let’s just go back to the Good Samaritan as the title.
I’m hoping you know this story. (You can read the whole thing HERE for review or if you’ve never read it.). But more importantly than remembering the story, I’m hoping you are living the story. Crossing the road. Allowing yourself to be “moved with pity.” Showing mercy.
It’s not easy crossing the road. I know I have found myself saying: There are too many things going wrong on the other side of the road! Too many needs. Too many bleeding and beaten. Too many homeless in 716. Too many needing meals. Too many. Too many. Maybe you have said/thought/felt this too? It can stifle us from crossing the road. Our pity and mercy can get overwhelmed.
But maybe that was going on in this story too. We only hear about the one beat up guy? But maybe there were dozens? Maybe those dozens were next to a bunch of lepers? Who were next to the hungry? Next to the outcast?
And yet this one dude still crossed and changed someone’s life. Maybe saved it.
I want to invite you to cross the road with me today. Whatever road you’re on. I will tell you when you look over there, it might seem overwhelming. But can we just focus on one life? Start with one today? Show that mercy and grace one person at a time?
St. Paul’s will begin crossing the road as a church in the days ahead. We are ready to launch the St. Paul’s Resettlement Mission. This Sunday in worship, I want to invite you to be a part of the conversation, prayer, learning and “road crossing.” As a community and partnered with another church and agency, we will begin helping a family resettle in 716 through the blessing we have of an empty Olin House. Come this Sunday or join in the live stream to hear more about that new venture.
But even before we gather, look across the road this week. As a loved, blessed child of God, allow the view of one or more in need move you with empathy and drive you forward with mercy. May each of us be the next one to cross that road.
Lord, help me have the strength and mercy to cross the road Amen
Be well, safe and blessed!