15th Sun C
Reflection is an essential element of our growth in Christ. As we reflect over what we have learnt and ponder it in our hearts, we come to recognise the presence of God in our lives.
This Sunday's Reflection
There are two parts to this parable: what happens out on the road and what happens at the inn. The second part addresses a real fear we have when getting involved in another’s trouble – how far do we go? At the inn, we see two things in the Samaritan’s behaviour. Firstly, he did what was needed and then he went on with his way. His care involved inconvenience and expense, yes, but it did not consume his life. He did not stay around to nurse the man to health, or to hear the man express his appreciation and thanks. No, the Samaritan was his own person. He had his own life to live.
Secondly, he didn’t place excessive expectations on the innkeeper. A common trait of ‘do-gooders’ is to expect others, often at expense to themselves, to join in helping. In contrast, the Samaritan, just because he was caring generously for the injured man, did not expect the innkeeper to do the same. The Samaritan was his own person. He could care without having others confirm his work.
When we prove ourselves to be neighbours to another, it not only involves showing practical compassion towards need. It also means that we are realistic about our own lives. We need to walk away when the job is done.