Scripture tells us we need to show love in action and not just with our words. In 1 John 3:16-18, we read: “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” (New International Version)
I am plagued with wide feet and as such, have difficulty finding shoes that fit and that I actually like. A few years ago, I was elated to find a pair of bright pink athletic shoes that were wide enough and felt comfortable on my feet. My thoughts were that they would be perfect for my daily walks and would help motivate me to exercise more as they would be so much fun to wear. I envisioned taking leisurely walks and counting my steps on my Fit-bit.
Well, I am sure you are familiar with the saying “The pathway to heaven is paved with good intentions.” I certainly had good intentions when I bought those shoes, but sadly, they have spent more time on the floor of my closet than in walking the sidewalks of my neighborhood. Funny thing is that unless I take the time to put the shoes on and lace them up, they will still sit in my closet. They will not walk those sidewalks unless they are on my feet.
Setting good intentions
Those pink shoes are much like our good intentions. We have good thoughts about reaching out—about offering to help—but unless we put those thoughts into action, they sit idle. Loving others is not passive. It involves walking the walk and not just talking the talk. It takes putting on those shoes, lacing them up and getting out and moving. Do you have shoes of good intentions? Hopefully they are not still sitting in the closet like my pink shoes.
Walking on dusty roads
Jesus spent His time walking the dusty roads of the Holy Land. He encountered people on those roads. He met people who heard His words or felt His touch and were healed. His feet were calloused and dirty, but that did not stop Him from His mission. He put on his sandals every day and went out into the world.
The most well known parable told by Jesus is the story of the selfless love of the Good Samaritan. (Luke 10:25-37). I find it interesting that even those who do not know the Lord are familiar with this story.
It happened that the Samaritan, as he was walking, came upon a man who had been beaten and robbed. Even though this man was a stranger to him, he made certain the injured man was taken care of and his wounds tended to. He lived out the words found in the verse from 1 John. His actions showed the love of God.
To come upon a such a scene as the Samaritan did is not very likely in your own neighborhood but consider this…When have you driven by someone who needs a meal, or neglected to call a friend whom you know could use some encouragement, or failed to reach out to welcome a visitor to your church because of how they look?
God wants us to “walk the dusty roads” in our own neighborhoods. Just think how you might meet someone who needs a “good Samaritan” in their life today.
I encourage you to ponder on this…How dusty are you willing to get your shoes?
To read more about what it means to be a modern day “Good Samaritan” click here: https://www.biblestudytools.com/bible-study/topical-studies/traits-of-a-gospel-centered-good-samaritan.html