(Jesus said) "Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?" He said, "The one who showed him mercy." And Jesus said to him, "You go, and do likewise." Luke 10:36-37
We Christians all know that parable Jesus told about the Good Samaritan. We also know we should join with that unnamed good-deed-doer and be good Samaritans too. Some of us even like to think we are good Samaritans and would never pass by on the other side.
I hope so, but there are times I wonder. I wonder how far I would go to help a stranger. I wonder if I would be as good a Samaritan as is Michelle LaPlante.
Here's the story: Jill Fink, a mother of two-year-old twins, took off her engagement ring so she could put sunscreen on her daughter. She put the toddler in a swing and dropped her ring into the child's stroller. She forgot to put her ring back on. She forgot for two days. When she finally remembered she did a lot of crying. Yes, she retraced her steps, but she knew the ring was gone.
Meanwhile, the ring was found by attorney Michelle LaPlante. LaPlante said, "If that had been my ring, I would have gone out of my head." So LaPlante put up a note at the park where the ring had been lost; then she put up fliers in the neighborhood; then she took out online ads; then she listed the ring on Craigslist; then she took the ring to the police department.
To make a long story short, a receptionist at Fink's office spotted the Craigslist ad and, in a short time, the ring, the ring's loser, and the ring's finder were united.
So, let me ask, "How good a Good Samaritan are you?"
We all know a person would be a lousy Good Samaritan if he were to keep the lost ring. But how far would you have gone to return that diamond to its rightful owner?
Would you have taken it to the police?
Would you have written up and posted fliers?
Would you have taken out ads? How far would you go to be a Good Samaritan?
I do know how far Jesus went to help the bruised and battered sinners of this world. He went all the way. Every moment of His life was dedicated to the single purpose of reuniting lost sinners with their Creator. Jesus didn't rest; He didn't take a vacation; He didn't take a coffee break from the cause, which would lead to His death and the salvation of our souls.
He was the ultimate Good Samaritan. He is our Savior. He is the One who says, "... do as I have done to you" (John 13:15b).
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, You have set an example for me. Grant that I may leave behind greed, selfishness and inconvenience, so I may show myself as Your disciple, a true Good Samaritan for others. In Your Name I ask it. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries