Friday, March 7, 2008

Road to Jericho

Painting by: Walter Rane

This morning I read the parable of the Good Samaritan. In a world that seems to be filled with hate, anger and violence I like to imagine hope restored, peace to reign and love to abound by seeking to forgive, lift, care and exercise compassion. We can make a difference... one person at a time. I really believe that.

“A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.
“And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.
“And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.
“But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,
“And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
“And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.”
The Savior could easily ask each of us, “Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?”
And we would answer, “He that shewed mercy on him.”
Jesus would advise us to, “Go, and do thou likewise.”3

With these words on my mind I searched through an archive of talks and found this to go right along with the Parable I read this morning.

President Thomas S. Monson observed:
"Jesus provided us many examples of compassionate concern. The crippled man at the pool of Bethesda; the woman taken in adultery; the woman at Jacob’s well; the daughter of Jairus; Lazarus, brother of Mary and Martha—each represented a casualty on the Jericho road. Each needed help.

To the cripple at Bethesda, Jesus said, “Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.”4
To the sinful woman came the counsel, “Go, and sin no more.”5
To help her who came to draw water, He provided a well of water “springing up into everlasting life.”6
To the dead daughter of Jairus came the command, “Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.”7 To the entombed Lazarus, “Come forth.”8
The Savior has always shown unlimited capacity for compassion.
On the American continent, Jesus appeared to a multitude and said:
“Have ye any that are sick among you? Bring them hither. Have ye any that are lame, or blind, or halt, or maimed, or leprous, or that are withered, or that are deaf, or that are afflicted in any manner? Bring them hither and I will heal them, for I have compassion upon you. …
“… And he did heal them every one.”9 "

"One may well ask the penetrating question: These accounts pertain to the Redeemer of the world. Can there actually occur in my own life, on my own Jericho road, such a treasured experience? I phrase my answer in the words of the Master: “Come and see.”10 We have no way of knowing when our privilege to extend a helping hand will unfold before us. The road to Jericho that each of us travels bears no name, and the weary traveler who needs our help may be one unknown. "- President Thomas S. Monson

May we all "go and do likewise".
God Bless you my friends,

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