Monday, April 30, 2012

The Awkward Samaritan

Yesterday, on the way home from church, I got the opportunity to be a Good Samaritan. I was driving  50 miles an hour down one of our main roads, glanced to my right, and saw a man stuck in a ditch. He was a disabled guy on a motorized scooter who'd somehow ended up in one of the gullies on the side of the road.

I could not believe my eyes!

Not only because there was a man in a ditch, but because it was Sunday in the South, and people were just driving by. Then, several thoughts flashed through my mind...

 Maybe I didn't really see that. 

 But what if I did? 

 What if he was really stuck and I was the only one who saw him? 

 It's my responsibility to get him out.

 How am I going to get him and his scooter out of that ditch by myself?

 Why didn't anyone else stop?

So, I made a U turn, slowed my car down and started searching along the sides of the road for him. I instructed my daughter on how to use the hazard signal while I safely pulled over. The debate about whether I'd actually seen him was raging in my car. But I knew what I saw because this man was hard to miss.

He was an extremely black man on a shiny red scooter. I say that because I think sadly, that may be why some of the other cars didn't stop.

Anyhow, I spotted him and just as I was pulling over, I saw another man walking toward him to help. I was encouraged and grateful because I was sure this guy and I could do it without having to ask my teenaged daughter to help me. I smiled at the other Good Samaritan (GS2), rolled down my window to talk to him and and realized...

                     the man in the gully was peeing into a jug. 

Just then, GS2 realized what was happening, looked at me and quickly turned around so that his back was to the guy. "Hey, there buddy. You need some help?" 

I'm in my car yelling at my kids, "Face front! Don't look over right now." Of course they do. GS2 and I had one of those moments. You know the kind, Jeopardy music began playing in my head as I tried to figure out how long I should wait. You can imagine the conversation in my car, and I finally said, "The poor guy! Who knows how long he was down there waiting, what's a person to do?"

Thankfully, when I asked if he needed my help , GS2 assured me he was able to get the man out by himself and the next thing I knew, they were making their way up the hill. Sheepish, but smiling.

"If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!"  Ecclesiastes 4:10

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