"And who is my neighbor?"
Here is His response:
30 In reply Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead.
31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side.
32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.
33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him.
34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him.
35 The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.'
36 "Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?"
37 The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him."
Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."
Mark spoke at a Backyard Bible Blast this week and his message was: "Who is my neighbor?"
He did a great job teaching the kids about helping others and reaching out to those people who need us no matter who they are. Under normal circumstances, the Jews would have had nothing to do with the despised Samaritans, but that was exactly who ended up reaching out to this Jewish man, a despised Samaritan.
I was thinking about this for myself and the girlfriends in my life (including you!), who is my (our) neighbor, and how do we reach out to them?
Looking at the story literally, I can not imagine walking by a woman who is laying there bloody after an attack or having been abused by someone. Of course any one of us would reach out and take care of her wounds.
But let's look at this from another point of view.
What about the women who are hurting emotionally around us? What about those women that are living with pain in their hearts everyday?
It's easy to love the one sitting with us over coffee while tears in her eyes telling us her story of pain. But let's think about the women in our lives that have hurt us. What about the ones who've spoken bad about us or our family. What about the women in our lives that are despised?
AND: What about the women that despise US?
Who is our neighbor?
Will we love those women who have not always been so good to us?
What about the ones who have hurt us?
What about the ones that don't like us at all?
Jesus' message of love goes so much deeper than I have even begun to understand. I pray that He shows you and I how to reach out to women around us that need us, and ultimately that need Him.