We had two neighbors move away this week.
One was our next door neighbor who I had just gotten to know but moved away due to life events.
Some neighbors on the floor below that I didn’t know apparently left very abruptly. A few neighbors were asking around to see if anyone knew what happened.
We don’t know if the Samaritan saw that man again that he helped. It’s unlikely they crossed paths again.
“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, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii[e] 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.’” – Luke 10:33-35
The question I take from this is, How do I treat people right now? How do I interact with each person I come in contact with? Whether it’s what we say or how we act, we each have the opportunity to treat others with love and kindness, and that may be our only opportunity.
I admittedly, didn’t notice that some of our neighbors had moved out. But because my husband interacts with everyone on a regular basis, he had noticed and so had others. I want to notice, too. It starts with keeping my head up when I walk up the three flights of stairs to my apartment. Saying “Hi” to the people I pass on the stairs.
One idea that was shared for me was to pray for my neighbor by name. Now I don’t know all my neighbor’s names, but this site helps me to do that. I get a daily email with names and a prayer so I can be intentional in my conversation with the LORD about those who live nearby.
Often the conversation is around planting seeds and how we often don’t see the fruit of that labor. But it’s not our job to help it grow, that is the work of the Holy Spirit. God places us in specific situations at specific times to share Jesus in our words and actions. Each moment, though fleeting, makes a difference. And when I let them pass, I pray for new ones and pray that God will give me the wisdom and courage to take the next step.
As Lent winds down into Holy Week and we follow Jesus to the cross, being reminded that he suffered and died for me and every single one of my neighbors, I will carry this parable with me. I will continue to remind myself of Jesus’ words in my life and my interactions.
“Jesus told him, ‘Go and do likewise.’” – Luke 10:37