Tuesday, 6 July 2010

and where are we in this picture...?

Luke 10: 30-36
“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. 31Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. 34He 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. 35The 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.’ 36Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?”

Thinking towards Sunday:
let's imagine we're in this story...

Although your pace is steady
you already feel exhausted.
Wiping sweat away,
you keep walking.

A stony road,
a scorching day,
a long but necessary journey.
White sunlight splitting the rocks by the roadside;
Heat shimmers and dances in the distance
under a hard, blue sky.
All is quiet,
yet not a peaceful quiet.
The air crackles with expectation.
An almost imperceptible sound as a pebble falls onto sand.
Your hair prickles at the back of your neck
as you feel eyes watch your every move.
Picking up the pace
you curse yourself for travelling alone.
It had seemed important at the time:
to make this trip...
but now you wonder if it was such a good idea.
The road twists and turns and the journey feels unforgiving.
Around a bend people stand,
watching, waiting.
You hold down your fear and keep moving.
No use.
Mocking laughter as they block your way.
Four of them -
and you lick your lips nervously
waiting for what you know instinctively 
will be a bad outcome.

It begins.
Harsh words.
Pushing, shoving.
Fists and feet connecting with flesh;
pain raining down upon your fallen body
until you just can't move.
Blood and agony.
Stripped, robbed.
Left for dead.

Time drifts.
In the distance, footsteps.
you groan,
waiting for them to finish off the job.
But these footsteps quicken and are gone.
The shadows stretch.
Someone else passes
and is gone.
Later - much later -
cool water pressed to your lips.
Wounds being washed and dressed amidst kind words.
You feel the hot tears falling down your face.
And then, just as everything swims out of focus and into blackness, you see a donkey....

Waking up several days later on a comfortable bed,
the innkeeper's wife tells you the story
of the one who didn't pass by.
your world-view is challenged
as you realise that 'those' kinds of people are...

1 comment:

Sue said...

This is so well written Nik. It really takes the listener to the road-side, which is where we best understand the parable.