Christian Living

Helping Others Reveals Our Love for God

By Carol Round | Assist News
homeless woman

“He answered, ‘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, Love your neighbor as yourself’”—Luke 10:27 (NIV).

In a recent sermon, our pastor used the parable of the Good Samaritan to remind us that we can all do something to help another in need. He said, “I’ve decided never to do nothing. Because we can always do something.”

Then, in our Sunday School class after church services, we shared stories of when we helped a stranger or missed an opportunity to help someone. We also shared stories of when someone went out of their way to help us.

I recall a time when I stopped—reluctantly I might add—to help a family stranded in a Walmart parking lot. When I say reluctantly, I drove past them at first. But the Holy Spirit wouldn’t let me go. Turning around, I discovered the family of four was headed from Kansas to Texas after a job offer hadn’t worked out. They needed gas money and food.

When We’re Reluctant to Help

Recalling my first impression of the young family, I realized my reluctance to help was due to my busy agenda. I had things I considered more important than stopping to assist the stranded family. After visiting with the father, I had them follow me to my church where they received non-perishable food and gas cards to help them on their way home.

That day I learned a valuable lesson. I was wrapped up in the urgency of those tasks I believed were more important than the lives of others who needed help. While I had plenty, they were desperate to get back home. Looking back, I know I was as blessed as the family who received our church’s help.

When I consider all God has done for me—loving me despite my sins, my flaws, and my past—why should I not love others as myself?

Love Others as Yourself

When we love others like God loves us, I think He smiles. Recently, I had another opportunity to put a smile on God’s face. As I loaded groceries into the back of my vehicle, I was approached by an elderly man driving an electric grocery cart. His keys were locked in his vehicle and he thought the keys to my Honda CRV might unlock his Honda Pilot. I doubted it and told him so. However, this time, I wasn’t reluctant to help.

Following him to his vehicle, I let him use my key in an attempt to unlock his car door. Of course, it didn’t work. Instead of saying, “I told you so,” I called for a wrecker to come unlock his vehicle.

While I was concerned about my ice cream melting in the unusual 70-degree weather for late February, I didn’t want to leave him stranded. He admitted he’d about given up and was looking for something to break a window to get inside.

The Key to Eternal Life

In the parable of the Good Samaritan, an expert in the religious law asks Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life. Jesus responds with two questions: What is written in the law and how do you read it? The expert replies, “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 love your neighbor as yourself.”

But the lawyer wasn’t satisfied, asking Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” After Jesus shares the parable, He asks, “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” After the young man replies, “The one who had mercy on him,” Jesus says, “Go and do likewise.”

Commenting on this parable, Martin Luther King Jr., once said, “The first question that the priest and the Levite asked was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But the Good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?’”

Bible teacher Woodrow Kroll summed it up in this simple but profound statement: “In helping others, we help ourselves.”

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After a 30-year teaching career, Carol Round found redirection as a Christian columnist, author and inspirational speaker. She is the author of nine books, all available at Amazon.com. See her website at www.carolaround.com for more information.

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