Luke 10:36-37 NLT “Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?” Jesus asked. The man replied, “The one who showed him mercy.” Then Jesus said, “Yes, now go and do the same.”
Editor's Note: The following is a prayer written, by Susan Aken, after hearing a sermon on the Parable of The Good Samaritan, delivered by T. D. Jakes in the wake of the recent protests and demonstrations against racial injustice in the United States. Susan is a white Christian who is a native of Oklahoma now living in Nebraska.
Please forgive me for being like the priest and the Levite who passed by on the other side of the road to avoid the man who was beaten and bleeding. These two were religious leaders; the good people everyone looked up to. They had no concern or love for the man who was left for dead, but pretended he didn’t exist.
I confess I’ve been like them in relation to my brothers and sisters of color. The injustices they’ve faced for years has had no direct bearing on me, so I’ve turned a blind eye to their need. I’ve taken no action when story after story of injustice occurred. Even after seeing mothers on the news weeping over their sons, I’ve never seen myself connected to them.
Lord, I’ve been self-focused, selfish, and a lover of comfort. I’ve been so concerned about me; I often don’t look beyond my own home or church doors.
How it must break Your heart, Father, to see Your children suffering and their brothers and sisters take no action. Instead, many of us pass by on the other side like the uncaring religious leaders in Jesus’s story.
May we be more like the Samaritan. This man, considered an outcast by the Jews, was suffering from prejudice and hate. Yet, he stopped to help his enemy. He gave all he had to meet the needs of the beaten man going beyond what might be considered reasonable help.
Jesus, You told us to be like the Samaritan. You told us to go and do likewise. You gave this as example of what it means to love our neighbor as ourselves.
I’ve been blind to the sin of self-focus. Change my heart Lord. Open my eyes to those who are suffering from injustice and need someone to see them and take action. Help me to be willing to give sacrificially as the Samaritan did in order to reach out.
God, help us! We’ve refused to see our precious brothers and sisters or to listen to their cries for help. We’ve lied to ourselves that everything is better and they’re ok. They’re not ok, Lord. They need us. They need You.
God have mercy. Wake up the church so that we will stand together as we should. All believers standing together. Ready to help all who are hurting. Help us to see the needs of those around us.
Thank You Father that You forgive us when we fail to love like You. Jesus paid for our sin but it has hindered the spread of the gospel in this world. Our apathy has not shown Your glory to those around us. Purify our hearts so that Your light can shine and the world can see Your love.
Heaven will have the most diversity of any place we’ve ever been.
Father, may our churches be a picture of the glory to come.
May we say to our brothers and sisters of color, “I see you. I hear you. I will stand with you.”
This isn’t about feeling guilty. It’s about feeling grief. Let it change our hearts.