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.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
How many times have we heard today’s Gospel, the Parable of the Good Samaritan? As a child, it was one of the first stories that helped me make the connection between faith and doing good in the world. When I was younger I was sure I would always be the good Samaritan in this passage. It can’t be that hard, right? Re-reading it now, it’s much easier to sympathize with the priest and the Levite. The right thing to do isn’t always obvious or comfortable or even endorsed by society at large. I don’t like discomfort and tension, and often it’s easier for me to choose the path of least resistance.
As we move into this week, can we pause to recognize the ways that the Holy Spirit might be moving in our discomfort, challenging us to discern a difficult but holy way forward?
—Christine Dragonette is the Director of Social Ministry at St. Francis Xavier College Church in St. Louis.
All knowing and loving God,
send your Spirit to fill me with holy discomfort.
Grant me the wisdom to know and trust your will,
and the courage to act upon it.
—Christine DragonettePlease share the Good Word with your friends!