Good Samaritan

<<compassion outworked>>

Jesus told the parable of the Good Samaritan who reached out to another in need, over-riding his cultural prejudices and personal plans (Lk 10:25-37). He crossed a deep cultural divide. He did not ignore the plight of someone in need or find an excuse why he shouldn't become involved, rather he saw this injured man as someone worth caring for and being loved. There was concern shown, financial cost involved, personal resources consumed and inconvenience to his timetable, along with the undertaking he was prepared to meet any additional requirements in the long-term to see the man restored to wholeness. The concluding practical words of Jesus were, “Go and do likewise”. Love is outworked practically.

While we should not act irresponsibly, we are not to ignore the needs of the lost and hurting or justify our lack of involvement. “Do unto others as you would like them to do to you” is often termed the golden rule (Lk 6:31). We should look out for the needs of others and as appropriate, endeavour to meet them (Phil 2:4). Is my heart touched by the plight of others? Sympathy should become caring

Love doesn’t just see, it acts to meet the need

compassion. Am I selective in whom I help or is my attitude of “doing to the least of these because we are doing it as unto Jesus”? (Mt 25:34-46). True Christianity serves the vulnerable and disadvantaged, those who can’t repay the kindness (Lk 14:12-14; Jas 1:27). What is my response? Do I help others unselfishly?

Pray for discerning eyes to see the real need (which is often masked under a façade), the response of a tender heart, and wisdom to know the best course of action besides a receptive mind-set for the person in need. Although we should endeavour to alleviate the suffering of people in this world, our aid and assistance should also influence the next life, which is of greater significance.

See also: actions/activity, attitudes, compassion, empathy, golden rule, good works, goodwill, others, race/racism, Samaritans, sympathy, unselfish.