The Proverbial Cup Of Sugar


Matt Joldersma

iStock_000016438243SmallUnless our neighbor is the sort from horror movies, we usually don’t think twice about asking to borrow the proverbial cup of sugar. This assumes two things. First, it assumes they have sugar.  And, second, it assumes that at some point in the future, we will have sugar with which to pay them back. That’s what we think of as neighborly.

But Jesus redefines what it means to be a good neighbor.

In Luke 10:25-37 (the story we call The Good Samaritan) Jesus responds to the question “Who is my neighbor?” And he portrays some horrifying neighbors. They see a desperate need and take immediate action: Get me away from here!  He also portrays a good neighbor. This person sees the same desperate need and takes immediate action: helping at significant cost to himself.

Through World Vision, we 30 Hour Famine leaders and our students have been made aware of our neighbors’ need and have been asked to help in Jesus’ name.  The correct assumptions are: we have the proverbial cup of sugar and that we may never be “paid back” (at least not in a literal sense).  But we’ve been asked anyhow.  The important thing to remember is that we have been asked in Jesus’ name.  For this reason we get involved.

Jesus’ suffering was beyond what any of us have experienced, yet he endured it in order to freely give us (not loan) the cup of life we desperately needed.  May we gladly endure the lesser suffering of the 30 Hour Famine this weekend to joyfully extend a needed cup to our neighbor in Jesus’ name.

(Don’t neglect to raise money along with the 30 HF!  Awareness is something all three of the neighbors in the parable had!  Only the good one did something about it.)