Today’s Gospel story from the mouth of Jesus is the story of the Good Samaritan. The story tells of a man who is beaten by robbers and left for dead. A priest walks by and crosses on the other side of the road. Then a Levite comes by and does the same. A Samaritan, who was despised by Jews, 1) poured oil and wine over his wounds and bandaged them; 2) Then he lifted him up on his own animal, took him to an inn, and cared for him; 3) The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper with the instruction, “Take care of him. If you spend more than what I have given you, I shall repay you on my way back.”
Jesus told this story because he was being tested by a scholar of the law. Can you imagine testing God? Unfortunately, I think we do the same more than we know. The scholar answers his own question about what must he do to inherit eternal life by telling Jesus to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself. But he wished to justify himself and asked Jesus, “and who is my neighbor?” We then get the Good Samaritan story.
The Gospel of Luke 10:25-37 concludes with this dialogue … Jesus asks, “which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the robbers’ victim?” He answered, “The one who treated him with mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”
What the Samaritan did was amazing in my eyes. I wonder how many people I have passed by throughout my life. What I have learned about myself is that I do little things such as giving a smile, a compliment, a helpful hand and maybe even writing this daily reflection, which is my way of treating others with love and mercy. I have had to learn that it may not be much but it is what I can do and I think it is pleasing to God.