Daily Devotion - April 15-2021 - The Attitude of the Innkeeper

Pastor: Connie Belmore

Daily Devotion – April 15, 2021
Luke 10:30-35
Weekly Theme: Attitudes About the Needs of Others
Today: The Attitude of the Innkeeper

At my previous church, I was involved with a ministry that took place at a park where many people who were homeless would go during the day. On Saturday’s, several people from different churches and agencies would come together, bring breakfast, and have a Bible study together with those who came. Many of those who were without homes would come from the Onslow County homeless shelter which had a 3-month limit. As a service and as able, the ministry would sometimes pay for a hotel room for a person to have an extra day or two to find a more permanent place to live. One hotel was great about adjusting rates to help the ministry, but they could not let them stay free. The ministry’s volunteers would take turns paying for a night or two. The hotel was very generous to adjust their rates and were very compassionate to those who needed a temporary place to stay. In fact, one lady who had a limited, but steady income, stayed there for an extended time at an adjusted rate.

Today in the parable of the Good Samaritan, we read about the innkeeper who agreed to, for two denarii, allowed the man who was robbed and beaten and the Good Samaritan to stay for one night. The Good Samaritan needed to leave, he asked the innkeeper to look after him and said he would pay him any extra expenses when he returned. The story does not tell us how long he was going to be gone, nor do we know whether the innkeeper let the injured man continue to stay there. We only know he was given money to look after the injured man.

How should businesses react to those who are without a place to stay and have no money to find accommodations? The fast food restaurant across the street from the hotel mentioned previously would also allow those who were homeless to come in, have a seat and offer them free coffee without making a purchase during extreme weather situations. Some customers would buy them a meal. Obviously, businesses need to at least break even and even make a profit so that they continue to expand and provide services and jobs to their customers and employees. The hotel did not have to adjust the rate downward for the park ministry nor did the fast food restaurant have to allow customers to sit in their business without making a purchase. Was it wrong in the story of the Good Samaritan, that the innkeeper accepted that he was paid to allow the injured man to stay there and to take care of him? We do not have the full story, but it seemed like a generous amount of money, enough to pay for approximately 25 meals according to one source. Should the innkeeper have just said, “Don’t worry about it, this one is on me” or “Hey man, that is way too much, I will only need one denarius”. All we know is that the Samaritan paid him to help the man in desperate need. It appears that the innkeeper treated the man as a paying customer. Or did he? How do we or would we respond to the man who was robbed if we were business owners?

Dear God, thank you for businesses who extend hospitality to those in need. Your Son, Jesus taught us how to respond to those in need. Help us to do as he did. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  August 2021  
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