THE GOOD SAMARITAN

Luke 10:36–37

Six years ago (Omo, I can’t believe it’s been six years already) I experienced and had one of the biggest lessons in my life. As a believer, seeing this lesson play out was critical for my mindset. On several occasions, I have learned, read, and taught, the story of THE GOOD SAMARITAN, but I never imagined it playing out the way it did in 2015. In fact, my heart was exposed as the “Priest” in the story of THE GOOD SAMARITAN.

Here goes it…

2015 started with me preparing for a new session in Unilag. Preparing for a new session meant balloting for Hostel Space — an energy-draining and tiresome drudgery.

For some reason, while being involved in the hostel dogfight, I felt this invincibility that I would get a bed space.

Unfortunately for me, I was brought right down to earth. The balloting came and went, but I never got a bed space. I was therefore left with the cheaper option of Squatting. After multiple inquiries and searches, I eventually got linked with someone and there began my experience as a squatter in RM B023. (Jaja Hall).

Being a squatter, I understood that the power dynamics in the room wouldn’t skew in my favor, and that meant that I would have little or no agency on the operations of the room. I adequately prepared my mind for that. My belongings were light, and my routines during my time there were straightforward and conducted in a manner that saw me spend as much time away from the room as possible.

If I remember correctly, we were at least a dozen in the room (originally meant for six people). And frankly, in the early stages of my stay there, I was beginning to ask myself how I found myself there.

The mix of roommates I had was clearly different from what I had experienced in the past. Before 2015, I had been a bonafide bed space owner on three occasions (My two years at Yabatech, and my first year at Unilag). And on those three occasions, I had a mix of roommates that were similar for most parts — Conservative, Cool-headed, and, if you will, “serious” folks. — The kind of environment I was comfortable with.

So, these my roommates in RM B023 served up to be untethered grounds for me. On the surface, a greater percentage of them(and not all) were not model students (or roommates). — They were more about the “cruise” life and not their studies. And to my shame, I judged them early and quickly. They also judged me quickly, albeit in a different light — I was identified as “Pastor”. In the early stages of my time in that room, I was genuinely worried that I would get in trouble (Spiritual, Moral, and possibly Ethical trouble). Some of the vices they were engaged in worried me. I had never had such a close, consistent, encounter with these vices. I had thought to myself that, if I had another viable option, I would leave the room.

As the days rolled by, my mind began to settle. I started to get used to them; I started to know them; I softened a bit on my judgemental side. One visible thing that aided my interaction was football — Almighty football bonding men of all races since 1800. Up until then, I hadn’t had a group of roommates who were as passionate as football. Man, we trolled and bantered for days in that room. (For what it’s worth, it prepared me for the epic football banters that came in the room I stayed in my final year.). Occasionally, whenever a big football argument broke out, my opinion on the matter was sought. — I vividly remember an argument about who the better player was between Neymar and Hazard. HI.LA.RIOUS!

By the second semester, most of my earlier fears about getting into trouble had gone into hiding. Still there, but inside a wooden box within my heart. These guys were still engaging in their cruise and shenanigans.

One of the multiple things my eyes were opened to in this period was how many young people were given to different forms of vices, shenanigans, and youthful exuberance. If I hadn’t been in that room, I might have not gotten the slightest clue of how carefree young students are about living life on the fast lane. I would have stayed aloof, with my shoulder pad, standing high on my pharisee-branded podium. And it was on this podium I was standing when I had what I now categorize as one of the biggest lessons in my life.

The incident was brief and sharp, but it was filled with humble pies.

On this fateful night, I slept quite early. I think I must have been very tired or I slept early with the intent to wake up later in the night to probably read or do an assignment — I can’t remember the details. As I enjoyed this sleep, I was suddenly woken by a heavy touch on my foot. As I grudgingly woke to see what was going on, I saw that a coursemate of mine was being helped into the room. Almost immediately, he started to vomit. The young man had drunk himself to stupor. My dear, I was internally livid. In my head I was going, “What is this for Christ’s sake? He is not a roommate, so why are you bringing him here? Now, see how you people have disturbed my sleep!”. Outside my head, I solemnly asked the question, “Why did you bring him here?”. My roommate(call him Spencer) who brought my drunk coursemate(call him Fabian) into the room immediately became defensive and answered my question. It was almost as if he heard all the judgemental questions I was asking in my head, instead of the solemn question I asked out loud. He explained that he saw Fabian lying helpless on the road while he was on his way to the hostel. He said he was compelled to help and drag Fabian off the road, especially with the fact that he was acquainted with Fabian. Fabian was helped, his mess cleaned, and was allowed to rest awhile in the room.

After that episode, I asked myself serious questions. There was Spencer, one of my roommates who were about the “cruise” life and youthful exuberance, one who didn’t appear to be a model student, helping out a drunk, helpless, fellow…and here I was, putting on my Pharisees wig, being a judge.

I asked myself that if I was in the position of Spencer, would I have helped Fabian? I mean, Fabian was my coursemate, but would I have helped him in that drunken state?

In the end, I told myself that if I struggled to answer that question, maybe I wasn’t any better than Spencer and my other roommates.

In my retrospection, I ruminated on the story of the Good Samaritan in the Bible. Anytime I read this story, I thought I fully understood the message Jesus was trying to pass, and it was easy for me to criticize the Priest and Levite that abandoned the half-dead man. However, having had an almost identical experience, I realized I was only fooling myself. I became the Priest and Levite I fondly criticized.

I am glad my heart was exposed in that manner. I am glad that phase of my life brought that lesson to me. I hope that anyone reading this picks a lesson or two from this…and starts to implement it in his/her life

Two of the essential ingredients of God’s love are mercy and patience for all of mankind. As believers growing in Christ, the expectation is that we also exude such ingredients in our daily interactions with people (irrespective of their background).

God is helping us. Amen.

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Name: Eto Profession: Lazy Nigerian Youth. Status: Child of God. Pizz Out. https://tinyurl.com/yah623gd

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Eto

Eto

Name: Eto Profession: Lazy Nigerian Youth. Status: Child of God. Pizz Out. https://tinyurl.com/yah623gd

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