true cheese

14 Oct
Evening.
An hour and a half of the weekend remain.. it’s been a really great weekend actually, I am much encouraged.
Do you remember that song we used to sing in primary school assemblies, that really cheesy one based on the Good Samaritan?
"Would you walk by on the other side….
Cross over the road my friend…"
Time for some honesty. This is Mel, promoter of homeless work, organiser of soup runs, she who rants about the guys on the street. She who, on a lot of occasions, when trying to get from a to b in a hurry because she is late, or frankly just when wandering town, will deliberately find an alternative route which doesn’t go down Cornmarket Street to avoid bumping into someone she knows. Yes, I do on occasion go out of my way to avoid passing homeless guys so that I don’t have to stop, spend time, make an excuse for not spending time, or do anything for them that day. Ouch.
And every time I made that hypocritical little detour, that damn little cheesy song got into my head. I hadn’t even thought about it since primary school. "Cross over the road my friend…" Just as I was crossing over the road to avoid someone. At first it just made me feel even more guilty; it sounded condemnatory. But one day, I let the thing play all the way through in my head and remembered the words, and suddenly realised what they were saying.
"Cross over the road my friend,
Ask the Lord his strength to lend,
His compassion has no end;
Cross over the road."
This was not a song that told you to stop being so selfish. It was a song that was recognising that frankly, it is hard to care about people all the time. That our compassion runs out pretty quickly and we just don’t have the strength for it every day. It was a song that was saying, hey, this is tough. What you should do is ask Jesus to help you out.
"Ask the Lord HIS strength to lend,
HIS compassion has no end (unlike yours).."
So, give up thinking about how much love I might be able to muster up that day while I’m tired or in a hurry or in a bad mood. Give it up, ask Jesus for his endless compassion instead, and cross right back over that road.
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