A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. Luke 10:31-32
The priest and the Levite probably wouldn’t describe themselves as compassionless. They’re good people, holy people. Their jobs are important and require them to be pure before the Lord. In crossing over the road and walking by the injured man they were just making sure they could do their job. They were being safe. Smart, even. And yet they aren’t the ones Jesus commends in this story. In their preoccupation with cleanliness they miss an opportunity to love their neighbor and practice the heart of what God requires of them.
We probably wouldn’t describe ourselves as compassionless. We’re good people. Followers of Jesus. And yet, how many times in each of our lives have we missed out on an opportunity to love our neighbor because it was too messy, we didn’t want to “get it wrong” or the neighbor in question wasn’t as clean-cut as we might like?
None of us can claim to perfectly love our neighbor all of the time. We’re broken people, of course we fall short. But your latest opportunity will not be your last opportunity. Ask God to open your eyes to the next opportunity to love your neighbor that he is giving you and ask him for the courage to take this opportunity to reflect his love.
By Jessica Rust