The Death of Good Samaritans

by | Aug 10, 2009 | 2009, Musings | 0 comments

August 10, 2009

The Death of Good Samaritans

We have all heard stories about an assault victim crying out for help only to have people around them refuse to come to their aid. One of the worst of those stories came from an August 24, 2007 Associated Press report out of St. Paul, Minnesota. It seems a 26 year old woman was beaten and sexually assaulted in an apartment building hallway for over 90 minutes. During that time, security surveillance tapes show that at least 10 different people opened their door to see what was going on. A couple of the neighbors even ventured out into the hallway a few steps, but no one came to her rescue.

I have often wondered what kind of person just stands by and ignores the pressing need of others.
Well, today I had an opportunity to watch human nature at work and I did not like it at all!

While driving with two friends to see a play, the freeway suddenly came to a halt. But as I watched, our lane seemed to be the only one stopped. About 6 cars up ahead, a car was blocking the right lane. It looked like it was on fire. And a few seconds later, a man pulled a woman out of the car onto the side of the road. And there we all sat…just passively watching. No one jumped out of their car, no one tried to help. Instead, everyone just started jockeying to get around the accident.

As soon as I realized what was going on, I drove my car up onto the right edge and slowly passed the waiting crowd. My two friends and I jumped out. They are both nurses, so they went to care for the woman who was bleeding from a wound on her head. I went to see about the two drivers. One guy was okay and the other was a young college girl on her way home from a school assignment. Her neck hurt, but mostly she was just very scared. I stood there on the freeway side of her car holding her hand trying to calm her down until the paramedics came. My best conversational line was to anticipate how cute the firemen might be.

The recue guys arrived and I am sure both of the victims will be alright, but I could not quit talking about my disgust at the failure of all those car loads of people to even stop and see if they could help.

And then I remembered the well known story subtitled “The Good Samaritan” in Luke 10. In an attempt to explain who is our “neighbor,” Jesus told the story how a man was beaten and left for dead on the side of the road. Two religious leaders passed by and ignored the beaten man’s needs. And then a Samaritan came by. Samaritans were the mortal enemy of the Jews. They hated each other. But the scripture says he stopped, bound up the guy’s wounds, put him on a donkey and carried him to an inn where he promptly prepaid for any additional care he might need.

Wow….what an illustration of how to live life. It focuses on involvement, not indifference. It acknowledges that there is a price to pay in order to help “our neighbors”…but what a great return on investment!

So maybe we all ought to start cruising the freeways this week looking for someone to help…or better yet, maybe we should just become more observant to the needs around us. Somebody is crying out…let’s open the door and help!

Warmest regards in Christ,

Sherry L. Worel

Stoneybrooke Christian Schools


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