Tuesday 19 January Reflection 2021
Pastor Suzanne Trump
Luke 10: 25-37
25Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he said, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?" 26He said to him, "What is written in the law? What do you read there?" 27He answered, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself." 28And he said to him, "You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live." 29But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" 30Jesus replied, "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. 31Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. 34He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, 'Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.' 36Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?" 37He said, "The one who showed him mercy." Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise."
On Saturday there was a very informative article in the Morning Call on the heroin epidemic being overshadowed by COVID-19 which was written by Marion Callahan and taken from the Bucks County Courier Times. The article starts out recounting the story of Megan Cohen who was on the streets addicted to heroin and in her own words, “wasn’t looking to be saved.”
Megan was so broken, walking down the street in the pouring rain, when an uber driver coming off his shift decided to pick her up. Of course, Megan was skeptical about his intentions and asked why he would let her in his car, and Joshua Santiago replied, “You are still a person.” What a beautiful and perfect reason to help another person. Amid all the chaos around us, we are still people. What would happen if we looked around and saw that we are surrounded by people? Broken to be sure, different color skin, different languages, different religions, different sizes, but at the very core, each a person.
If you go on to read the article you find that others helped Megan too. A hot meal, a place to shower, some water, and encouraging words. Two years after that chance encounter Megan is in recovery and she is working to help others. She formed the Grace Project and she regularly goes back to the streets of Kensington in Philadelphia where the heroin crisis thrives. She provides clothes and food and encouragement. She is now a Grace Dealer.
Can we be Grace Dealers too? Can we recognize that among that brokenness everyone is still a person? Can we share a word of grace and encouragement with those who are hurting? Can we speak out for those who have no voice in our society? Can we recognize the humanity within every person we meet? Can we recognize that everyone is a beloved child of God?
Or course we can! We are loved by God, given forgiveness by God, no questions asked. The real question is, Will we choose to do it?