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Are You a Good Neighbor?

Jennifer McConnell, Superintendent

January 8, 2021

Are you a good neighbor? I asked this question on Monday to the ms/hs students about a very well-known story in the Bible called the Parable of the Good Samaritan

Are you a good neighbor? I asked this question on Monday to the ms/hs students about a very well-known story in the Bible called the Parable of the Good Samaritan. We know this story very well and if you need a refresher, go to Luke 10. In this parable, a man was left for dead and two other people (Levite and a priest) passed him by without offering a hand of assistance. Yet a Samaritan man came and had compassion on the man and that compassion compelled him to act.

When the Samaritan was passing by, he saw the wounds and he poured oil and over the wounds. This would start the healing process. Why did the Samaritan do it? Because he had a clear focus. He didn’t care that the person was different from him. The church (priest) passed him by. His neighbor (fellow Levite) passed him by. He didn’t care that the culture of that day told him he would be perfectly fine if he walked on by and ignored him like the other two men did. The culture of that day told him he had no obligation to even help him off the ground, but the man took it a step further. Not only did he pour oil over his wounds, but he got the man to an inn-keeper and paid for all his expenses.

It didn’t matter that the Samaritan didn’t cause that man to be there; it wasn’t the Samaritan’s fault, but he still took responsibility for it. He took responsibility for something he wasn’t responsible for. Jesus did the same thing because that’s just who He is. He had a clear focus on who His Father is and what He was called to do.

It’s no secret that we live in a broken world and this week was another picture of that brokenness. We as Christians, cannot live on the other side of the road like the Levite and the priest. Don’t bury your head in the sand and pretend you don’t see what’s going on around us. We have a gift that can start the healing process. That gift is the love of Jesus Christ.

Yes, being the Good Samaritan is out of many of our comfort zones. Being the Good Samaritan can be messy. It can be an inconvenience to us. It may cost us something that we didn’t even cause in the first place, but we have the opportunity to give other people a clear picture of who Jesus is. When we ignore what we see, when we know we should act, when we act like the priest or the Levite, then we are not showing Christ well.

Are you displaying Him correctly? Or are the actions of your life confusing people even more. Do you proclaim to be a Christian, but then mistreat your brother, your sister, your neighbor? Are the things you say and your actions leading people to Jesus or further away. Are you giving people a clear picture or is the picture of Jesus blurry?

I challenged the students with this message and asked them to remember this everyday.
This year, I ask that you put others before yourself. Serve your neighbor. Love your neighbor. See your neighbor; especially the way that Jesus sees them.

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