But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion. So he went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.Luke 10:37
Sometimes help comes from unexpected places, like from the Good Samaritan who showed love to his neighbor. There is much we can learn from that Good Samaritan.
What if there is something to learn from the man lying wounded on the side of the road? What if we are that man? Is this a stretch? Maybe. Maybe not.
Jesus said the Laodiceans were wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked. Perhaps we are, too, unless, like the Laodiceans, we insist we are rich, wealthy, and in need of nothing.
What can this wounded man teach us?
He looked for help in the Expected Places. The help he needed was not available. When the Good Samaritan arrived, this man had a choice: to either accept or reject the help. When you are in need, are you able to humble yourself and put yourself in the care of someone whom you would consider an “outsider”? Or are you going to forego help, lying by the side of the road watching priests and Levites walk by?
This parable of the Wounded Man shows that compassion from an “outsider” heals just as well as compassion from someone inside your religious community. Don’t forego help when you need it.
- Find a counselor.
- Find a support group.
- Talk to a neighbor.
The Mosaic law tells us to love the strangers among us. That is well and good. But are you able to receive love from the stranger when you are in need? The Wounded Man did.
Go and do likewise.
Thanks so much for sharing this lesson. When we consider the parable of the Good Samaritan, we are often encouraged to view it from the lens of a person who can give help. “Don’t be like the priest,” we are told. “Don’t be like the Levite.” Those are important lessons. We need to be helpful and not let formalism get in the way of doing right. But, as you point out, we should also view the story from the perspective of the wounded man. We will find ourselves broken and destitute on our journey. We need to be open to receiving help, even when it comes from unexpected sources. Are we willing to receive help from a source that is “beneath” us? God may want us to so that we realize that no one is above another in His eyes.
I received love from a stranger or an angel at my front door, from a group outside of my religious community. It was at a time when I was really in need, and this one woman could sense it, and sort of pushed her way in my house. In my culture, being “pushy” is not necessarily a controlling behavior, but is often considered love. I love her. I have not seen her again. At that time, she gave me the comfort that I needed, and I am thankful to God for it.
This occurrence has been a step in my life, to help me be more receptive of love from strangers.