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Friday, July 12, 2013

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It was a hot summer day as I was driving my new car along highway 280 on the way to Luther Seminary. Suddenly I heard a loud clanking sound. I had run over a piece of metal. The thumping sound on my right front confirmed my worst fears. I had a flat tire.

I drove onto the shoulder, got out and looked at a very flat tire. I took off my suit coat, loosened my tie, and realized that the sweat was pouring down my brow even before I opened my trunk. The car was so new that I had no clue as to where the spare and jack were. The cars seemed to accelerate as they whizzed by me. I wished I had taken my cell phone with me.

I poked my head into the trunk, planning my course of action, when a car pulled up behind me. Out jumped an energetic young woman. "Step aside," she said, "I have a car just like yours and I had to fix a flat last week." She knew exactly what to do and within minutes she had my spare tire on and the flat in my trunk.

"I would like to give you something," I gratefully said. "No," she nicely replied. "I don't take money. I am just glad that I could help you." "Your address?" "I don't give out my address either. Have a better day!" And, off she drove.

"I think I just met the Good Samaritan," I thought to myself. I remembered Jesus' words, "Which of these three do you think was a neighbor?" My Good Samaritan and the one described by Jesus were authentic people.

Lord Jesus, I thank you for all the Good Samaritans you have sent into my life. Help me to be an authentic person with those whom I meet today. Amen.

Hubert Nelson
Eden Prairie, Minn.
Master of Divinity , 1962

Luke 10:25-37 (NRSV)

25 Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he said, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
26 He said to him, "What is written in the law? What do you read there?"
27 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 neighbor as yourself."
28 And he said to him, "You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live."
29 But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"
30 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.
31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.
32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.
33 But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity.
34 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.
35 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.'
36 Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?"
37 He said, "The one who showed him mercy." Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise."

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.