Who is my neighbor?”
That was the theme for synod assembly this year. As such, we heard a variety of reflections on the Good Samaritan story (Luke 10:25-37). Whether you’ve never read it, or you’ve heard it a million times, take a look. It’s a good story with a lot of depth that unfortunately can get lost because it’s so familiar.
The man who acted as a neighbor did so by showing mercy. By not just seeing the man on the side of the road, but by letting this man’s situation interrupt his day. We can be a neighbor by doing the same.
This concept probably sounds familiar.
Another way to think about this parable is less often heard particularly in our Western context. When we hear this story, we so often think of our neighbor being anyone we can help, but a neighbor is also anyone who helps us. Not only are we to be the Good Samaritan, but we are to see the Good Samaritan in others. It would’ve been quite a stretch for Jesus’ audience to think that a Samaritan would do anything right and good. By telling this story, Jesus was calling out the prejudices of his followers.
Another question asked at the assembly was, “How are we being neighborly?” How are we helping and how are we allowing ourselves to be helped? How are we seeing the Good Samaritan in others? We are accountable to these questions in our daily lives, both in and beyond the church. The best way to help and be helped is in the context of a relationship.
To grow our efforts to build relationships here at Hope we are going to start offering 4 x 4 fellowship groups. You can find more information about them on page 9. Please consider joining in! As we get to know one another better, we become better at seeing one another and responding.
A fellow neighbor and servant in Christ,