Share The Care

If you have been following the Australian Open Tennis tournament, you probably saw the clip where Jo-Wilfried Tsonga went over and helped one of the ball girls. Apparently the ball girl had been hit in the face but was doing her best to keep her composure despite being injured. It was a rare moment in sports as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga took his mind off the intense match he was and did the unexpected. He walked over to the ball girl, gently took her arm and led her off the court to an attendant so she could recover. For taking the time to care, the crowd responded with applause equal to or greater than a winning serve.

People are moved when someone stops what they are doing to genuinely care about the needs of the distressed.

In Galatians 6:2,3 the Apostle Paul writes, “Share each other’s troubles and problems, and so obey our Lord’s command. If anyone thinks he is too great to stoop to this, he is fooling himself. He is really a nobody.” What stood out to me about what Tsonga did on the tennis court, was the fact he didn’t think as a tennis star he was too important to stop and help a ball girl with her troubles. What makes us a “somebody” is when we stop and care for others.

The Lord’s command that Paul is talking about here is to love our neighbour as we love ourselves. In the classic story of the Good Samaritan a lawyer, wanting to justify loving some people and not others, asked Jesus “Who is my neighbour?” Jesus responded with a story that confronted his prejudice and challenged him to care for others, even when it was uncomfortable.

In order to love others and show we care we need to:

1. Love unconditionally.

If we truly love our neighbors we are willing to go beyond our social and ethnic boundaries. This kind of love is not based on our feelings, but it is a choice and the feelings often follow. In his book Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis wrote, “Do not waste your time bothering whether you ‘love’ your neighbor; act as if you did. As soon as we do this, we find one of the great secrets. When you are behaving as if you loved someone, you will presently come to love him. If you injure someone you dislike, you will find yourself disliking him more. If you do him a good turn, you will find yourself disliking him less.”

2. Get involved.  

Helping others will interrupt your “game” just like it did for Tsonga and there is likely a risk of some kind.

3. Be willing to make a sacrifice.

If you read the story of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37, you will find he gave up his medicine, his ride, his money, his time, his safety, possibly his reputation and his line of credit.

4. Believe the best in others.

The Good Samaritan was helping an individual with whom his tribe was at odds with, yet he believed the best in this person and reached out to help him. It is easy to talk yourself out of caring for someone else and to make assumptions that would give you an excuse not to get involved.

We live better when we take the time to share our time and resources to care for others. Today I challenge you to beware of others around you that may need an act of kindness to make their day a little brighter.