Just Being Neighborly
(Originally Posted May 2nd, 2011… This is the church I joined last month. You never know how someone may be impacted by what you do, or even by your reaction to the difficulties you face.)
This morning on my way into church, there was a vehicle with a flat tire. I told an usher (I don’t usually go there) and he looked out, shrugged and said he didn’t know whose it was. I told another. After church I waited around. The vehicle didn’t leave… most people did. I left a note under the wiper blade and went back in one last time to ask if it belonged to a friend of mine who lives out in the country, knowing she wouldn’t be able to change it or air it up where she was headed. The pastor was the first one I saw, and I asked if he knew anything about the vehicle. Immediate concern, and then ‘I hope it’s not…’ He looked out, immediately thanked me and went out to look at the tire. It apparently belonged to someone who was struggling with some things. If we’d let them drive off, they might have had to pay for a tire they couldn’t afford, and more than that, they might have wondered if anyone cared. As it was, they came out to find the pastor and a deacon down on their knees looking for the nail in the tire and (I’m guessing) offering to fix it for them. Wish those things happened much more often.I’m still sorting through that. I’ve been debating going regularly to this church. Frankly, the services don’t impress me, but it’s only about three blocks from my house, services are decent, I have several friends there, and… well, several reasons that don’t make it a good church but don’t make it bad either. I like the pastor. He seems like a very reasonable person, and considerate. He listens and is involved but doesn’t put himself forward. If I hadn’t gone back in that last time to check on my friend, and he hadn’t responded as he did, I probably wouldn’t have gone back more than once more. The others I asked didn’t respond as the kind of neighbors I’d want. One had even forgotten about it when I went back to ask if he’d found the owner. But the pastor’s response and the deacon’s (my friend’s husband)… I could live with a church with that kind of heart.
Then too, I was embarrassed because I left after I knew someone would take care of it. But there’s nothing I could have done if I’d stayed. “Yup, it’s flat alright.” They knew that. My extra input on that matter wouldn’t have been helpful at that particular moment. But it worried me that I told someone, and then I left him in the dirt on the pavement to fix it himself and drove off.
The parable came to mind… who’s your neighbor? I feel I did what God wanted me to do–but more than that, maybe saw what He wanted me to see, whether I decide to go there or not. Just knowing there are people out there who aren’t offended that you don’t do more, take things in stride, and want to help others too was a huge blessing to me.
Posted on July 5, 2011, in Christianity and tagged Christian love, Christianity, fruit of the spirit, healthy churches, Jesus, love, testimony, who is my neighbor. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.