I'm Not Who I Thought I Was

Have you ever wondered which part you would play in the story of the Good Samaritan?

I have. And until recently I would have said that I would have been the Samaritan.

A few days ago an older (read:wiser) woman expressed some frustration at the lack of initiative and responsibility that people around my age, in the church, take for their "neighbors" who aren't already in their circle of friends.

As a result, I sort of came to the realization that I have played the Levite or priest role.

 I've seen people sitting off by themselves and passed them by. I've noticed that someone wasn't at church but didn't bother to check on them. I've assumed that since their wheel wasn't squeaky that it didn't need any grease. But I didn't bother to get to know them well enough to learn to recognize the sound of their squeak...so they may have been squeaking and I just didn't recognize the sound.

I've kept to myself when I should have reached out. I've stayed huddled in my own little world instead of seeking out other kingdom dwellers who need connection.

The thing is, isolation is a tool of Satan. He is a lion, prowling around looking for someone to devour.

Lions don't pick out the sheep that are close to the shepherd. He picks out the one who is alone. The one who is isolated. The one who got left behind or who wandered off.

He is lying. 

He's saying that I'm not good enough, that my house isn't clean enough, that I can't say the right things and that I should just leave things to someone else who can do them better.

He's deceiving with social media. 

He's isolating me by fooling me into thinking that I have real connections with people on social media. These connections satisfy my deep soul need for community just enough that I'm willing to live with the shallowness of it so that I don't have to actually open my life and my heart.

I only share carefully edited and closely cropped snippets of who I am.

I know a lot about people, but I don't really know people. I know what they ate for dinner but I don't know what they whisper in the uncaptured and unstaged moments they spend on their knees. I know about their latest Pinterest project but I don't know about the chaos just outside the bounds of the creatively cropped pictures of utter perfection. 

I need to make time and put the best interests of my neighbors before my own. Even the ones that I don't know and don't seem to have a lot in common with.

I need to get to know people regardless of whether I think their needs are being met or not.

I need to stop assuming that someone older or wiser or more skilled will do it. There are enough "neighbors" to go around.

I need to stop comparing what God has given me to what He's given others. It's just my job to plant or water, it's God who gives the increase. I don't have to worry about what happens next. All I have to think about is offering up what I have.

There's no famine on God's grace. It is limitless and relentless. There's more than enough to go around.

So who are YOU in the story of the Good Samaritan? 

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