From the time I was little I had the habit of watching others around me and seeing a snap shot of their lives unfold. Somewhere along the way I became part of their lives in simple ways whether it was picking up a dropped item, lending my cell phone for someone to make a call or helping a lost child. The desire to help and be a part of changing lives has led to my choice of serving at Hope Clinic for Women for the last nine years.
It is also why I am fascinated by the TV show “What would you do”. ABC’s hidden camera and staged ethical dilemma series puts ordinary people on the spot to see if they would step in or just be a bystander. In a way is a modern day test of the Good Samaritan. For those unfamiliar, the parable of the Good Samaritan illustrates the commandment of love your neighbor as yourself and addresses the question of who is our neighbor.
Jesus answered by telling a story. "There was once a man traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho. On the way he was attacked by robbers. They took his clothes, beat him up, and went off leaving him half-dead. Luckily, a priest was on his way down the same road, but when he saw him he angled across to the other side. Then a Levite religious man showed up; he also avoided the injured man. A Samaritan traveling the road came on him. When he saw the man's condition, his heart went out to him. He gave him first aid, disinfecting and bandaging his wounds. Then he lifted him onto his donkey, led him to an inn, and made him comfortable. In the morning he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, 'Take good care of him. If it costs any more, put it on my bill—I'll pay you on my way back.'
[Jesus asks] "What do you think? Which of the three became a neighbor to the man attacked by robbers?" “The one who treated him kindly," the religion scholar responded. Jesus said, "Go and do the same." From The Message from Luke 10:25-37:
It is important to realize is that Samaritans were very low on the social structures of Jewish Society and the religious scholar is asking Jesus how far down in society levels am I commanded to love my neighbor. Jesus is clearly telling the scholar that everyone is your neighbor and your love should extend to all.
At Hope Clinic we have the opportunity to share love to everyone who walks in the door. It can be through a kind gesture or more impactful by directly working with clients. I have learned that no role is small when working in a ministry as each plays a part in changing someone’s live. If you have found yourself being a Good Samaritan to those you meet, I encourage you to consider becoming a part of Hope Clinic. There are many ways to be involved.
Desiree O'Neill has been with Hope Clinic for over 8 years and serves as the receptionist and client services assistant. In her 8 years, Desiree has heard many stories and has seen Hope Clinic grow to meet the needs of the women and families in Nashville. Desiree lives in Nashville with her husband and 6 year old son.