I watched a movie recently. A little boy was trapped in a moving train. As the train rumbled past a station he looked through the bars and saw a little girl outside. He called desperately for help but she just stared at him. She stared, emotionless as he passed.
How often do we see the plight of others but do not respond? Even worse, how often do we just NOT see them? Like the little girl in the movie, we stare without seeing, without feeling, or we look past those in need.
This story is not a new one, in fact Jesus told a similar story of a man who had been beaten and robbed. Those who you would expect to stop and help him, walked by without a second glance. But one man looked, saw, had compassion and then responded. He took care of the man in need. Not only did he physically tend to his wounds, he helped move the injured man to a safe place and financially provided for him as well.
I was reminded of this parable yesterday when we met a crippled beggar in the street. I saw him from afar. Realizing that I was unprepared to give him anything and knowing that it would be imprudent to dig through my bag on the crowed street, I simply diverted my eyes as we passed. When we walked by him I heard him say, “You folks have a nice day.” And then I heard my daughter reply enthusiastically, “Oh thank you! You have a nice day too.” I was immediately convicted and realized that I have so much more to give than just a few coins. I have Jesus living inside of me and I should allow His light and love to shine forth from me at all times, to all people. It cost me very little to simply look at someone in the eye and wish them a blessed day.
Is there someone in your life that needs help? Someone who is wounded, trapped or without hope? Are you ignoring their needs, thinking that surely someone else will come along to help them. Or like the little girl in the movie, do you stare right through them, but fail to see their cries for help? Or like me did you simply just look away?
The king will answer them, ‘I can guarantee this truth: Whatever you did for one of my brothers or sisters, no matter how unimportant [they seemed], you did for me. Matthew 25-40
God’s Word Translation
The Parable of the Good Samaritan