A certain man while walking along a highway was attacked by some
thieves, who beat him terribly and robbed him. Then they left him
wounded and bleeding along the side of the road.
By chance there came a charismatic Catholic and a reformed Jew walking
along that way. When they saw the man, they passed by on the other side.
Likewise, a bible-toting Baptist, a proud to be "full-Gospel"
Pentecostal, a "word-walking" plain-old Protestant, and even a couple of
New Age Unitarian Universal existentialists happened along, while on
their way to an inter-faith community leaders conference. As each one in
turn came upon the man and saw him lying helplessly beside the highway,
all passed by on the other side.
However, a certain Samaritan as he was walking came to where the injured
man was, and when he saw him he had compassion on him. Being on foot and
without any means or provisions to render aid, the Samaritan ran two
miles to the nearest public telephone and hurriedly dialed 911.
Because funding for the police, paramedic and fire rescue services had
all been drastically cut, being woefully under-staffed there was no unit
available to send, especially not to such an out-of-the-way place. The
emergency dispatcher immediately gave the sympathetic Samaritan a
referral list of private ambulance companies to contact.
One-by-one the Samaritan called each of the ambulance companies, but all
required a cash deposit prior to actual transport of the patient, which
they would be happy to charge to the "financially responsible party" on
any valid American Express, MasterCharge or Visa Card. In lieu of a cash
deposit, only a limited number of health insurance plans were accepted,
providing they could obtain prior authorization from the health care
provider for ambulance services (but no HMO's or PPO's).
In vain, the Samaritan tried to explain that the thieves had stripped
the man naked and left him penniless without his wallet; there was no
way to show proof of health care coverage even if he had any! The
Samaritan was praised and verbally applauded for his valiant efforts to
act as an advocate on the injured man's behalf, but since he was unable
to secure the required deposit, he was politely refused service. The
Samaritan was told not to worry himself any more about the victimized
man. Someone else has probably already come along and, seeing the man's
plight, provided assistance.
Not to be thwarted in his effort to get help for the badly injured and
hopelessly stranded stranger, the Samaritan hurried off in the direction
of the nearest town. With an air of expectancy he entered the first
establishment he found, which was a "rental-car" agency. Although all he
wanted to do was get the fallen traveler into town as quickly as
possible, as soon as the rental car clerk learned why the Samaritan
wanted to rent one of their cars, he immediately turned the Samaritan
away citing the regulatory terms of the "liability coverage" on their
entire fleet, which strictly prohibited the use of any of their vehicles
to transport the handicapped or disabled. Their insurance contract also
prohibited use of rental vehicles for commuter transport or car pools.
Even though the Samaritan patiently explained that none of these
exclusions were applicable in this case, the apprehensive desk clerk
insisted there was nothing he could do. According to company policy the
matter required the approval of the office manager, who would not be
available until the following Monday morning; but if he'd like to leave
his name and number, he would ask the manager to get back to him as soon
Seeing that any further attempt to reason with the clerk would be
futile, the Samaritan sighed deeply to himself as he left the rental
agency and hurried down the street to the local drug store to buy some
first aid items with which he could temporarily treat the bleeding man's
wounds. Once he finally reached the register, to his utter dismay, the
Samaritan was astonished to learn that without a major credit card or
bank check guarantee card, (regardless of how urgent the circumstances
were) without proper identification, the drugstore clerk (according to
their store policy) steadfastly refused to accept his out-of-town check.
The Samaritan could not even purchase necessary bandages or ointment for
the injured man's wounds. In desperation the Samaritan traded his coat
with the merchant for a box of Band-Aids and some antiseptic swabs.
It was with a heavy heart that the Samaritan began his return journey on
foot. The irony served to reinforce his determination to get back to the
On his way through town the Samaritan spotted a congenial looking
community church. Thank God, he thought as hope sprang up in his heart.
Here he knew he would find "like-minded people" who would lend a helping
hand. The Samaritan hurried up the steps and knocked on the office door.
With the pastor's help and the church's van, he thought, we'll be able
to get to the injured man before dark!
In the pastor's comfortable study, the Samaritan listened silently as
the pastor (while patting the Samaritan frequently on the shoulder)
explained how he'd really like to help the poor fellow who was injured,
but unfortunately it was entirely out of his hands. In a recent vote,
the church council members had unanimously decided that church's new
maxi-van was to be exclusively reserved for "group functions" of the
church membership only.
The Pastor enthusiastically commended the Samaritan for wanting to help
the man. He expressed his utmost admiration for the Samaritan's
compassion and lavished a steady stream of compliments upon him
concerning his Christian zeal, as he slowly but deliberately ushered the
Samaritan to the door. While insisting he was not insensitive to the
injured man's plight, the pastor applauded the Samaritan's willingness
to take up "the man's cause," but he didn't think he or his church
should get involved... who knows what kind of liabilities there might
Once again the Samaritan was turned away. The pastor apologetically
handed the Samaritan a list of various other city, county, and public
health agencies that he thought would be better suited to this
After searching from dusk until after dark, the Samaritan finally
relocated the body of the mortally wounded man, laying in a ditch beside
the highway. Chasing away stray dogs which had come to lick the bleeding
wounds, the Samaritan stood quietly beside the now lifeless corpse.
Prolonged exposure to the elements had been more than his beaten body
could bear. Bending down beside the bruised and broken body, the loving
Samaritan put out His nail-scarred hand and gently closed the dead man's
eyes... while tenderly caressing the man's battered face -- Jesus wept.
'I will satisfy the priests with abundance, and MY people will be FILLED with My bounty,' declares the Lord.
- We must expect God's goodness in our lives.
- Don't believe the lies of the enemy.
- Choose to believe God and His word over any doubts you may have.
- The Lord wants to satisfy you with His goodness.
PRAYER: Lord, I receive what You have for me. May my life be filled with Your bounty. Amen
"Whatsoever He saith unto you, do it. Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim." John 2:5-7
Do not forget the necessity of obeying the inner voice of Christ, which may be recognised by these three signs--it never asks questions, but is decisive and imperative; it is not unreasonable nor impossible; it calls for an obedience which costs us some sacrifice of our own way and will. "Whatsoever He saith unto you, do it!"
Do as you are told. It was a severe test to obedient faith to fill up those big jars, which stood in the vestibule of the house. Each would contain about twenty gallons, and as they were probably nearly empty, it would be a long and tedious business to fill them, especially at a time when guests required other attention... "They filled them up to the brim!"
In your obedience, always give Christ brimful measure. It may be a very small thing He asks you to do--to teach a class of children, to pay a visit to some sick man or woman, to write a letter, to speak a word of comfort, to hold out the helping hand, to give the glass of cold water, but see to it that your response is hearty and brimful! The jar is your opportunity! A very common and ordinary one! An act that may seem needless or inconvenient; but out of it may come the greatest achievement of your life! When the Lord calls you into co-partnership, be sure not to say: "'Please do not ask me!" Nay, serve Him to the brim! He never asks you to do one small act for Him, without being prepared to add His Almighty grace to your weakness, thereby perfecting the act. It is an amazing thing that He should want our help. Let us give Him to the brim, and, as we do so, we shall see a wonderful and beautiful thing, which is "hidden from wise and prudent, but revealed to babes". "The servants who drew the water knew." Many of us realise that this miracle is constantly taking place. We fill our waterpots to the brim with water; but at the end of days of careful preparation we sadly review the result, and say to ourselves: "After all, it is very poor stuff, only water at the best!" But as we pour it out in service to others, we know that the Master has been collaborating with us, and has turned the water into wine! There are secrets between the Lord and those who obey Him! It is blessed when we are workers together with Christ. He knows, and you know. A smile passes between you and Him, and it is enough! The best wine is always kept in reserve!
Psalm 42:1 tells of a deer that longs for a refreshing stream on a hot day. Knowing about water does nothing to quench your thirst only drinking water does. The same is true of our desire for God. Have you ever longed for more than just information about God? God wants you to experience Who He is. Seek Him and He will satisfy your desire to know Him intimately.
“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”
(Psalm 139:14, NIV)
“I’m God’s masterpiece. I’m wonderfully made. I’m talented. I’m original. God has given me everything that I need.” That’s what David was saying in Psalm 139. He praised God for making him in an amazing way and declared that what God had done was wonderful. Is that how you started your day?
Most people think they are being humble by putting themselves down. They say, “Oh, I’m not that talented. It was no big deal.” But really, we should be bold like David and say, “I’m amazing. I’m a masterpiece. God made me and He doesn’t make junk! I am equipped, I am empowered, and I am amazing!”
Today, make the decision to stop putting yourself down; stop focusing on your flaws and comparing yourself to others. Your Creator says “you are a masterpiece.” It’s time to get in agreement with God and realize how much He loves you. It’s time to realize how special you are. Make the shift by changing your words and start by saying what David said!
Father, I do praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Thank You for equipping me for every good word. Thank You for showing me Your love in a new way as I keep my heart and mind focused on You in Jesus’ name. Amen.
— Joel & Victoria Osteen
A little girl on the way home from church turned to her mother and said, "Mommy, the preacher's sermon this morning confused me."
The mother said, "Oh! Why is that?"
The girl replied, "Well, he said that God is bigger than we are. Is that true?"
"Yes, that's true," the mother replied.
"He also said that God lives within us. Is that true, too?"
Again the mother replied, "Yes."
"Well," said the girl. "If God is bigger than us and he lives in us, wouldn't He show through?"
I like that little girl's way of putting it. If God lives in us, then there's no way of keeping Him from "showing through". That's the essence of Christian living -- living in such a way that people around will see God in our lives.
"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven." (Matthew 5:16)