Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. ‘Teacher,’ he said, ‘what must I do to inherit eternal life?’ He said to him, ‘What is written in the law? What do you read there?’ He answered, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbour as yourself.’ And he said to him, ‘You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.’
But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, ‘And who is my neighbour?’ Jesus replied, ‘A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan while travelling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, “Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.” Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbour to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?’ He said, ‘The one who showed him mercy.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Go and do likewise.’
Today is Monday the 7th of October, the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, in the 27th week of Ordinary Time.
Bless the Lord, my soul, who leads me into life. The most important thing for me to do now, as I enter into prayer, is to let go for a moment, to let go of my own concerns, my own worries and fears and reluctance, and let myself be led by God, trusting that God, who loves me, will lead me into life.
Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Luke.
This isn’t a trial, yet in this scene people are put on the spot and questioned. A lawyer wants to test Jesus, but Jesus ends up questioning him, and inviting him to question himself. It seems that there’s a difference between the answer in the book and the answer in lived experience. The lawyer knows the theory but needs to learn the practice.
Is there something in the scriptures that I’ve known in my head, but not in my heart, in my life? How have I learned to live faith and not just know it as theory? Jesus’ story helps the lawyer to move beyond the narrow boundaries of his habitual thinking. Has that ever happened to me?
As you hear this story again, what part of it stays with you at the level of the heart? The lawyer already knows what’s right but has never imagined how much deeper and broader God’s word can be, how it might stretch his horizons of thinking and reacting. How does this passage invite you to grow and expand your horizons, to change your attitudes and behaviour?
We’ve been listening to a conversation between Jesus and someone seeking what’s right. What do you find yourself wanting to ask or say to Jesus right now? What grace do you desire? Allow yourself to say to him whatever’s in your heart.