Introduction and Index

A teacher of the Law came up and tried to trap Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to receive eternal life?" Jesus answered him, "What do the Scriptures say? How do you interpret them?"

The man answered, 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind'; and 'Love your neighbour as you love yourself.' "You are right," Jesus replied; "do this and you will live."

But the teacher of the Law wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, "Who is my neighbour?" Jesus answered, "There was once a man who was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho when robbers attacked him, stripped him, and beat him up, leaving him half dead. It so happened that a priest was going down that road; but when he saw the man, he walked on by, on the other side. In the same way, a Levite also came along, went over and looked at the man, and then walked on by, on the other side. But a Samaritan who was travelling that way came upon the man, and when he saw him, his heart was filled with pity. He went over to him, poured oil and wine on his wounds, and bandaged them; then he put the man on his own animal and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Take care of him,' he told the innkeeper, 'and when I come back this way, I will repay you whatever else you spend on him.' " And Jesus concluded, "In your opinion, which of these three acted as a neighbour towards the man attacked by robbers?" The teacher of the Law answered, "The one who was kind to him." Jesus replied, "You go, then, and do the same." - Luke 10 v 25 -37

Fortunately, Lord, I don't often come upon people who've been mugged and left half dead in the road! But I must admit I have come across a lot of people who've had a raw deal in life. The trouble is that. even if I wanted to, there's usually precious little I can do to help them. I can pray for them, however, and this is what I want to do now.

There are some who may not have fallen into the hands of thieves but they certainly have fallen into the hands of drug-dealers who have robbed them not only of money, but of health and dignity. Some of these victims steal to fund their habit. Some prostitute themselves. All desperately need you and need your help. Please reach out to them in your love. Deliver them from their addiction. Bring into their lives some of your own people who will befriend them, who will support them as they struggle with their problems, who will lead them to you. Others have horrific debt problems and owe huge sums to banks and money lenders. Some are nearly out of their minds with worry. Some are tempted to turn to crime to get enough to pay their debts. Please, in your mercy, help them.

Yet others have been robbed of their health and their self-respect by their addiction to drink. What may have started as an occasional escape from the stresses of life has now become a chronic addiction that holds them like a vice. May they be helped to escape from the grip of alcohol. May they, in their need, turn to you to find the strength to break free.

Lord. I know I am right to pray for such people, but I don't want praying to become an excuse for not acting if there is anything practical I can do to help others. Please show me what you want me to do and if there is some way I can be like the Good Samaritan in helping someone in need.