Lord, open our eyes. Let us see what you see.
Read: Luke 10:25-37 (NIV)
25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?” 27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” 28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.” 29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii[c] and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’ 36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” 37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
The parable of the good Samaritan is one of disappointments and help coming from unlikely places. Once the man traveling was robbed, beaten, and left to die, I remember rooting for those who began to walk by. “Help him! Be the one to stop!” I would think. Of course, the priest would stop. No. Well of course the Levite, someone who was so religious, would stop. No again. I was disappointed when the man was passed by, again and again. Would anyone stop to have mercy? Finally, a Samaritan sees the man and does not pass by. He takes pity on him. Those who we expected to help did not. But a Samaritan, one considered impure by race and religious practice, bent down and had pity. I can imagine him lifting the man out of a pool of his own blood, breathing shallow, face twisted in pain, and leading him to a safe place. The priest and the Levite both saw the man, but they didn’t really see him. What they did each time was pass by. Their hearts were not open. But the Samaritan, someone considered inferior, had his eyes open to see his neighbor in need.
Who are we passing by in our daily lives?
Dear Father, let us not pass by the ones whom you love so much. Let us bend down to help and have mercy.