My friend, may I ask you a question? Is it true that most of us care enough to want to do the right thing when others need our help? But, often, isn’t it a matter of reacting quickly and bypassing that usual internal debate of "do" or "not do" that really makes the difference?

Life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I'm Mark Brunner.

A number of years ago I was waiting for a flight that had been delayed. There was nothing to do but bide my time so I headed to a nearby bookstore in the terminal mall to buy a magazine. As I was browsing through the magazines I became aware of a disturbance across the mall in a little coffee shop. A young woman with three kids was struggling to get control of her kids and the noise was apparent to everyone. I felt suddenly compelled to cross the mall and offer some sup- port. I debated the thought for not more than ten seconds. As I began to put the magazine back into the rack, however, someone else beat me to the punch. A young soldier, backpack and all, had stopped and was offering to buy the crying kids some burgers and fries. I guess his reaction time was a bit better than mine.

I think it's true that most of us care enough to want to do the right thing when others need our help. But, often, it's a matter of reacting quickly and bypassing that usual internal debate of "do" or "not do" that really makes the difference.

Here's a story: A little girl, clutching her money tightly, entered an ice cream store. Before she could say a word, the store clerk sharply told her to get outside and read the sign on the door, and stay out until she put on some shoes. She left slowly, and a big man followed her out of the store. He watched as she stood in front of the store and read the sign: No Bare Feet. Tears started rolling down her cheeks as she turned and walked away. Just then the big man called to her. Sitting down on the curb, he took off his size-12 shoes, and set them in front of the girl saying, "Here, you won't be able to walk in these, but if you sort of slide along, you can get your ice cream cone." Then he lifted the little girl up and set her feet into the shoes. The shining eyes of the little girl could not be missed as she shuffled up to the counter and ordered her ice cream cone. He was a big man; big belly, big shoes, but most of all, he had a big heart. (Author Unknown)

Sometimes the difference between caring or not is reacting and not debating about the risk. When Jesus taught the story of the Good Samaritan he didn't teach that the two individuals who didn't stop to take care of the beaten man had no compassion. Perhaps they did. But what made the difference was that neither stopped to do anything. They may have debated the advisability but they didn't stop. God doesn't want you and I to take foolish risks when we're offering our help to others; but He is asking us to risk our own comfort and time. That goes with the turf. May it be that when others are hurting our reaction time will be quicker than our debating time. We miss so much when we debate too long.

We pray. Heavenly Father, You are the God of mercy and grace. In your pure justice, You meet out Your gifts of love even at the sacrifice of You own Son, Jesus Christ. You have taught us how and when to be merciful to others, even at our own sacrifice. Forgive us when we see opportunities but don’t act because we feel we might be interfering or, worse yet, putting ourselves at risk of embarrassment. Help us Lord to always react and act when others need the very measure of mercy that Jesus would give them should He be walking in our shoes. We ask this in Jesus name. Amen.

Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.

If you have a special prayer request, please send your request to ”This Passing Day!”

<> From Beech Springs, God bless you for Jesus sake.

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