Thursday, October 25, 2012

Do Likewise

And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” And he answered, “You shall 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 your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.”
But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.” Luke 10:25-37

Today I will be doing a training on healing. All of the technology that I have tried to use in preparation for the preparation has failed. I was anxious and worried until I finally realized that healing is an activity we cannot do on our own. We have to rely completely on God but also on the people around us. My surgery was so recent and yet I have forgotten how completely dependent I was (and am) on others. Some were loving family and others were complete strangers. All provided tender care and were never unkind or shaming. They too wanted healing for me and were active participants in my recovery.

The lawyer was questioning Jesus with a desire to understand how to be faithful. Like many of us, his mind got in the way of the answers he was being given. So Jesus tells him the story of the Samaritan and tells him to do likewise. He told him to show mercy to all, strangers, friends and enemies alike. We participate in our own faith as we tenderly care for others, and show mercy and kindness to all people. We are invited to respond to others with love and to become active participants in the recovery of others. Our walk in faith is not one of judgment or shaming ourselves or others, but rather, to always be participants in God's healing and restoration.

Today as we gather to learn together about healing, I ask God to help me be an active participant in the healing of others. May my faith be strengthened with each stranger who becomes a friend. May we set aside all shame and judgement and move together tenderly and prayerfully. May we give what we have so others might thrive and be followers of Jesus by being his hands on earth.

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