Yesterday I gave a ride in my truck to a woman who had been hacked with a machete by her husband. People in the village I was ran up to the truck and asked me to take her to the closest hospital 90 minutes away.
Of course, I said.
It was a no-brainer.
I didn’t have to reflect much, partly because three young women came with her. Also, I was taking several pastoral workers back to their villages after a parish zone meeting.
I had a community that let me say yes.
In today’s first reading, Moses tells the people (Deuteronomy 30: 11- 14):
This Instruction that I enjoin on you today is not too baffling for you or beyond your reach. It is not up in the sky… , Nor is it across the sea… No, it is something very near to you, already in your mouth and in your heart…
As Gustavo Gutiérrez writes in Sharing the Word through the Liturgical Year (p. 184), “God does not require anything superhuman. In the final analysis, God only asks something very human, namely…to love.”
Magda Trocmé, the wife of the Protestant pastor of Le Chambon, André Trocmé, opened the door of the presbytery one day during the Second World War. There was a Jewish family seeking refuge. Her response was simple, “Come in! Come in!” From that point on the village became a refuge for Jews seeking to escape; hundreds were helped to safety in Switzerland.
When we take to heart this Instruction of God and when we have a supportive community, it is easier to respond to those in need.
It is not an act of heroism.
It is merely being the human person whom God wants us to be.
It’s a no-brainer.
You can read my reflection on today’s Gospel of the Good Samaritan here.