Sunday, July 10, 2016


Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he said, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?" He said to him, "What is written in the law? What do you read there?" 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 given the right answer; do this, and you will live."
But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" Jesus replied, "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, 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 while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, `Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.' Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?" He said, "The one who showed him mercy." Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise. Luke 10:25-37

Some lectioary readings are more appropriate than others This Sundays readings seem all too appropriate after the week we have had. It has seemed as if we have lost sight of our neighbor. Young men are being killed by police and angry young man killed several police who were keeping the peace. We easily justify our own anger for our own but want calm from others. We have failed to do the work of loving our neighbor.

Jesus is challanged by a young man who is a lawyer. The lawyer wants to be on the side of right. Jesus invites him into a story about loving God and loving neighbor. The Samaritan - one of the outsiders - was the person who exemplified loving our neighbor. He took time out of his life to make life better for another. We are invited by God to see the neighbors all around us and do what we can. Small things like recognizing the person, acknowledging their need, offering them help, no matter who they are or how much they might scare us or be different from us.

Today I ask God to help me see the neighbor in strangers, in enemies and even in my family. May we each do our part to spread the love of God as we take a moment to help someone else, someone so different and so like us.

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