Sunday, July 10, 2016

Reflection: Luke 10:25-27

The 15th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Luke 10:25-27

Today a scholar of the law decides to test Jesus.  The scholar asked Jesus: “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”  As a scholar, the man was well versed in the law.  Was he simply curious to how Jesus would respond to his question?  Or was the scholar testing Jesus?

Jesus immediately replied to his question by naming the first two commandments that were given to us by God:  “Love God with your heart, your strength, and your mind and love your neighbor as yourself.”  The scholar said to Jesus: “You have answered correctly.”  However, the scholar was not satisfied with Jesus’ answer and he then asked Jesus another question:  “Who is my neighbor?”   This time Jesus did not give a direct answer to the scholar’s question.  Rather, he presented a scenario:  “A man was traveling to Jericho and was attacked by robbers.”  Jesus told the scholar that the robbers took the man’s clothing, his money, and his valuables.  Then they beat him and then left him for dead on the roadside.

After a time, a priest came by.  When the priest saw the man, he ignored him, crossed to the other side of the road and continued on his way.  A while later a Levite came by.  He also ignored the man and traveled on.  Finally a Samaritan came by and saw the man.  This man, a Samaritan, responded with concern and compassion.  He approached the man and poured oil on his wounds to cleanse them.  Then he put the man on his own animal and took him to an inn.  When they arrived there, the Samaritan himself washed the man’s wounds and cared for him.  The next day the Samaritan needed to continue on his journey.  However, he placed the wounded man in the care of the innkeeper and he gave the innkeeper money for the man’s expenses.   The Samaritan promised to return after he had finished his business.  If the man’s expenses had been more than the money that he had given the innkeeper, the Samaritan would reimburse him for the additional expenses.

Today I invite you to seriously ask yourself: What am I doing to ensure that I will inherit eternal life?  Am I reaching out to the wounded in my life?  Do I consciously attend to the people in my life or do I simply take them for granted? 

At times in our lives, we will be the person who was stripped and beaten.  We may experience family difficulties, financial problems, depression, or anxiety.   At these times, it is a blessing when a friend, family member, neighbor, or co-worker reaches out to us.  Their care and attentiveness to us truly may be balm for our souls.   Today, if you notice someone who seems to be struggling, reach out to them.  You may be the very gift they need at that point.  Hopefully, a friend, family member, or even a stranger will reach out to us when we are struggling.  Jesus works through us and in us.  Today may we act and react to others as Jesus did!

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