Do you ever worry about your neighbours? About that they may think of you? What impression you give them as a neighbour?
When they meet you or see you from a distance, what impression do they get? Is it accurate or a distortion? Are your neighbours threatened or confused by the impressions you give? Do they want to get to know you or do they lock the door and hide? Scientists tell us that the further away your neighbours live, the more likely they are to hold outdated, inaccurate and stereotypical views of you. Did you know, for example, that once broadcast, TV signals begin an endless journey outward into the cosmos at the speed of light? That means our earliest TV broadcasts are probably travelling through star systems more than 400 trillion miles from earth. Do you realise that our neighbours living 60 light years away are watching the first episodes of the Lone Ranger in black and white. 50 light years away they are now watching Rawhide and Bonanza. 40 light years away they have moved on to the original Star Trek series. 30 light years away they are able to watch the Dukes of Hazzard and Knots Landing. Just 20 light years away its Seinfeld and the Sopranos. Those only 10 light years away are being blessed by the Apprentice and countless episodes of Lost. Does it worry you what our neighbours in space may think about us? Does it matter what impression we give?
If you want to explore this further I recommend the new film District 9.
If your neighbours knew about your TV preferences, the books you read, your interests, your convictions, values and priorities, what would they think of you? What about the people next door? Over the road? Down the street? The people you meet every day on the train? The people you work with? It may have been questions like this that prompted a certain lawyer to ask Jesus the question, “who is my neighbour?” meaning, “who do I bear some responsibility for and who can I ignore?” We answer this question all the time whether we consciously think about it or not.
Read more here cc-vw.org/sermons/parablesamaritan.htm
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