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|Jack and the Wheelchair Guy
|Thursday, March 19, 2020|
“I just dunno if I did the right thing or not." Jack shifted back and forth from one leg to the other. My friend was upset, so naturally, I urged Jack to spill his story.
“It was midafternoon in downtown Chicago,” he recalled. “I walked past a truck being unloaded outside a CVS store. Then I saw him.”
“Saw who, Jack?”
"This guy in a wheelchair was coming toward me. As I got closer, he somehow managed to flip his wheelchair over on its back. Made me suspicious, so my antennae were up."
“Did you help him up, Jack?”
“Well...no. Part of me wanted to. Part of me was afraid that this was a setup. I wondered if the moment I stooped down, some accomplice would appear from nowhere with a knife to my back."
“What’d the guy do?”
“He slowly twisted around, trying to get himself upright. I felt more guilty than ever when I saw he had no feet. Just rolled up cuffs—plenty dirty, too. Truthfully, every inch of him was filthy. I asked him if he was okay, and did he need any help."
“He said he was fine—didn’t need help. But I sure felt conflicted watching him crawling on the pavement.”
Jack shook his head, shifted his weight back and forth again, and continued. "I'm thinking....This guy is filthy. This guy may be part of a setup. This guy may have Coronavirus. So—I eventually left, as he seemed to be making progress. And now, I wonder if I just played a starring role in a 21st century edition of Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan. Was I wrong?”
Here’s my answer: it’s never wrong to stop and care. It’s always right to ask if someone needs help. But we cannot force our help, our gospel, or our Savior. We can—and must—offer all three!
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