The other week my wife and I were in the parking lot of a grocery store when another customer, an older woman who was packing her purchases into her trunk, had her bumper hit slightly by the driver pulling into the parking space in front of hers. I saw the slight lurch of her vehicle at the moment of impact, and watched her come around to the front to see if there was any damage. She had a brief exchange with the young driver of the other vehicle, who seemed unconcerned–considerably less than she, at any rate. When I told my wife that I’d seen the whole thing, she immediately urged me to go and talk to the lady to see if everything was okay and let her know that I’d seen it all–in case she needed a witness. I did shift into reverse and slink back a few car lengths, but when I noticed that the woman was not pummeling the young man with her fists or swinging her jack at him, I assumed everything was fine and drove off.
My wife, ever the people person and “Minister of Justice”, rebuked me soundly for my lack of concern and token involvement. I deserved every word, and though I have never told her so (I guess I should go and confess before she reads it online) I have thought a lot about what she said and about what I did. Didn’t.
Galatians 6.10 says this:
“So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” (ESV)
Paul has just finished discussing the futility of “sowing to one’s own flesh”–of practicing, in every sense, the self-absorption that characterizes the fallen human spirit–and has encouraged his readers not to “grow weary of doing good.” He admonishes us to become intentionally involved in the lives of others for their eternal good and God’s immeasurable glory.
Perhaps next time I won’t just “walk on by.”