Lack of Compassion "Stinks" of Sin.
“As they continued onward toward Jerusalem, they reached the border between Galilee and Samaria, and as they entered a village there, ten lepers stood at a distance, crying out, “Jesus, sir, have mercy on us!”
He looked at them and said, “Go to the Jewish priest and show him that you are healed!” And as they were going, their leprosy disappeared.
One of them came back to Jesus, shouting, “Glory to God, I’m healed!” He fell flat on the ground in front of Jesus, face downward in the dust, thanking him for what he had done. This man was a despised Samaritan.
Jesus asked, “Didn’t I heal ten men? Where are the nine? Does only this foreigner return to give glory to God?”
And Jesus said to the man, “Stand up and go; your faith has made you well.” Luke 17:11-19
A few weeks ago, I walked through our church lobby to meet my husband who is the custodian there and I passed by folks from the community who were waiting for clothing ministry appointments. Intense body odor wafted through the air. I held my breath and couldn’t wait to go back outside for fresh air. I did not make eye contact with them. Instead, inside, I judged them and I am ashamed of myself. There are reasons for body odor. Maybe no one taught them hygiene. Maybe they are homeless and have no place to wash. Maybe they have no washer. Maybe they ran across town to make their appointment because they need clothes for their children. I’m sorry, Lord, for my behavior.
Beth Moore in “Jesus, 90 Days With The One And Only” shares how she did not minister to leper colonies in India when she had the chance because the smell of decaying flesh was too much for her. She regrets it.
Father, help me/us to have more compassion. Change me into Jesus. He draws near to lepers. He sees them. He loves them. He heals them. May I be more like Jesus and not miss out on opportunities to love people (all people). Amen.
What have you done that "stinks"? Or that you regret?