I noticed something interesting today in my morning Quiet Time. In Luke 10, Jesus gave His Parable of the Good Samaritan iin response to the question, “Who is my neighbor?” Jesus had just told the crowds that we must love our neighbors as ourselves. When asked, “Well, then, who are our neighbors?” Jesus told about a man who was robbed and injured, lying in the ditch. The hero of the story was a Samaritan who stopped to help.
Why make a Samaritan the star of the show? Why aren’t we talking about the Good Roman or the Good Moabite or the Good Publican?
Here’s what I’d never before noticed. In the previous chapter, Luke 9, Jesus had been scorned and ill-treated by a Samaritan village. He had hoped to stay with them, but the people did not welcome him. The disciples were so angry they wanted to call fire down from heaven to destroy the town.
In Luke 9, the Samaritans disdained Jesus; and in Luke 10, a Samaritan ended up as the hero of His story.
Jesus was (and is) a good forgiver. He didn’t hold grudges. He didn’t go around nursing His wounds or propping up His pride. His self-image wasn’t threatened at all by slights and rejection. His spirit was impervious to harboring bitterness or to cradling resentment.
This Christmas, don’t take slights and snubs too personally. Just smile, go your way, and find a way of repaying evil with good.