How often do we find those wounded by life’s muggers and lying by the roadside?
When others pass by the marred and bruised, are we generous with our resources, whether with time, money, or whatever? Do we allow our reservoir of love to spill over to one in need?
In the parable of the good Samaritan, three men found an injured man, lying by the side of the road. Stripped of his clothing and his wallet. Wounded and left for dead. But two men were on a journey, and they left him alone. Walked right by him. Even on the other side of the road.
But when the third man, a Samaritan, came along, he had compassion and stopped to help the man. Bandaging his wounds. Taking him to an inn and caring for him. (Luke 10:30-36)
Are we good Samaritans, or do we pass those grieving by the roadside, leaving the wounded behind?
The armed forces have a motto that I love: Leave no man behind!
The military goes to extreme lengths to rescue their wounded comrades and risking their own lives to recover the bodies of fallen soldiers.
Part of The Soldier’s Creed goes like this…
I am an American Soldier.
I am a warrior and a member of a team.
I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
We are in God’s army; we are a team. We are to put God’s mission first. To never quit. To take care of our wounded. Those beaten down by life. Those feeling overwhelmed and defeated. Those who have had the precious things of life stolen from them. Those discouraged and heartbroken, living a horizontal life. Those who have fallen by the wayside.
Do we lift up the spiritually distressed and carry them to Jesus, that they may receive a restorative infilling of Life from Him?
Do we shoulder the weight of our wounded…in our hearts…in our prayers… carrying them to Jesus?
Four men lifted up their paralyzed friend, one who lived a horizontal life, and carried him to Jesus on his pallet bed. (Mark 2:1-12)
Who do you know that is living a paralyzed life? Someone whose soul has grown tired of his burdens and horizontal mat-life?
Are we pallet-bearers? Do we carry the weight of a friend in need?
A man of the law once asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” (Luke 10:29 NKJV) Jesus answered with a parable and when He finished His story, He asked the man, “‘So which of these three do you think was neighbor to him who fell among the thieves?’ And he said, ‘He who showed mercy on him.’ Then Jesus said to him, ‘Go and do likewise.’” (Luke 10:36-37 NKJV)
Are we doing likewise? Having compassion on our wounded brothers and sisters in Christ?
No matter what someone is going through, Jesus is the ultimate Helper and their greatest need is salvation, if they don’t already have it. Let us keep that mission always in the forefront.
Yes, some will not want our offer of help. But whether a friend cries out for help or not, we should be there to offer support, comfort, and whatever else they need.
Let us attempt to leave no one behind!
***Winner of the gift card was Cathy Bouldry.