Why did the chicken cross the road?
We can be cute and answer, “to get to the other side;” or, we could be scientifically serious and respond with dietary and avian philosophies dating back to the time of Laozi, 260 years ago in China.
But what about us, what about the human animals that will cross a road only for a sale, or a restaurant, on the opposing side of the avenue? We are too wrapped in our own circles of influence to be concerned with crossing the street for anything other than mundanity.
If we are truly neighbors to those around us, if we truly accept that the family across the road and our family are worthy of each other, then we must cross the road for the benefit of both families. There is too much disengagement and segregation between black people and white people, between gay and straight people, between young and old, between sick and healthy, between prisoners and free people, between Jews and Gentiles, Muslims and Christians, and Protestants and Catholics.
Life’s demands make it imperative that we cross the road; we need to notice that our neighbors suffer, as we do. Perhaps, if we share with our neighbors, more than just a “Good morning, brother,” we will learn to appreciate that what happens to either of us happens to all of us.
Luke 6 says, “How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye?” Do we remember how painful it is when we get a piece of sand in our eye at the beach? I don’t care how old we are; our first instinct is to run home to Mama for her to stop the pain.
Our lack of caring, or even trying to understand, what it’s like across the road hurts us, just as much as the grain of sand in our eye.
Loving our neighbor is not a luxury to be cast aside with irrational whims; it is a gift to cherish.