Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Pastor's Ponderings, September 8, 2015

Let Us Help Others

In the Huffington Post on September 2, 2015, an anonymous writer posted an obituary for Aylan Kurdi who died with most of his family trying to migrate to a better life.  The obituary read in part… “ You were a 3yr old little boy wanting to play safely, away from the threats of violence and war... Rest In Peace Aylan Kurdi. May God forgive us for failing you.”  Many are suffering in the world due to man’s inhumanity to man and the indifference of those who see the suffering and turn away to focus on their own concerns.

In the Bible, Jesus told the story about the Good Samaritan when asked about whom should we be concerned about.  In this parable, a crime victim was left by the side of the road and a priest and another holy man of his own ethnicity ignored him but a foreigner helped him (Luke 10:30-37).  Are we like the people that help the Aylans of the world or are like the ones that will turn our heads away from our neighbor’s sufferings?  Jesus is very clear that in the Judgment at the end of the world, how we treated others will have a direct bearing on how we fare in that trial (Matthew 25:45).

While it is true that we should be concerned about our families and our own vision and goals, it is crucial that we look outside of ourselves and be concerned about the challenges of mankind (Philippians 2:3, 4).  This week, let us be concerned about the little Aylans of the world and God will take care of us (Luke 12:22-24).

Luke 10:30-37
New International Version (NIV)
30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead.
31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side.
32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.
33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him.
34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him.
35 The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”

Matthew 25:45
New International Version (NIV)
45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

Philippians 2:3, 4
New International Version (NIV)
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,
not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

Luke 12:22-24
New International Version (NIV)

22 Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear.
23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!

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