Art for This Week's Lectionary Text: The Good Samaritan

If you follow the lectionary you know that one of this week's texts is the parable of the Good Samaritan.This is a familiar story from the Bible and has been illustrated by many artists throughout history. Here are two interesting examples...

The Good Samaritan, Vincent Van Gogh, 1890

Portrait of YOU As Good Samaritan, James B. Janknegt, contemporary

Some questions to help you think about this art in relationship to the Luke 10: 25-37 text:
  • Do you recognize any images?
  • What kind of lines do you see? How are they used?
  • What do the colors remind me of, or what feeling do they give?
  • Where are the important images placed?
  • Would you like to meet these people?
  • What does this art mean to you?
Verse 37 (go and do likewise) is currently speaking to me. Last weekend my family had the chance to serve a meal to several families from our community that are temporarily without housing. The program they are in provides shelter, food, and any other support needed to help get them back on their feet. My teenage children brought several friends with them to help prepare and serve the meal. At the beginning of the evening while explaining the program to one of our friends it was interesting to hear her responded with, "Wow, my church needs to be doing this too!" I had a second "ah, ha" moment while conversing with a client as we ate our hamburger dinner. This woman was in her 60's and listening to her banter about her children and grandchildren, her past experiences with her church community, and her pondering about how her husband's day at work had been caused me to think that I could have been talking to so many different women that I know. Her reflections, wonderments and worries were universal. She became my neighbor. Lastly, after dinner was served and the adults were settled in for the night my husband and I returned home. The teens stayed and played with the children because they were all having so much fun. Late into the evening we were all gathered back at our home and listening to everyone's reflections made me proud of the teenagers involvement but also found me causing to confess that we don't do enough to love our neighbor. I'm praying this week that I can have open eyes for who the neighbor is each day and a willing heart and hand to "go and do likewise." I hope the scripture this week and the above artwork will inspire you also.