Friday, November 16, 2007


According to Wikipedia, compassion is best described as an understanding of the emotional state of another. It goes on to say that compassion is often combined with a desire to reduce the suffering of others and to show special kindness to those who suffer. Compassion is most often shown through one's actions - much like faith in Christ. It is the actions that a Christian takes that show our faith to the rest of the world. It is easy to say that your heart goes out to the suffering of the world, but it is only true compassion when you are led to do something about it.

So how does one do something about it? It isn't always about giving money to the poor, helping the sick, or some other grand gesture. Many times it is simply listening to the heartbroken, providing a kind word or a card in a time of distress, or just letting someone know that you care. There are many suffering around us who need compassion. It's not just the hungry, the poor, the elderly and the sick. It is the mother struggling with her children, the family torn by alcoholism, the son who just can't live up to his parents' expectations. All of these people need to know that someone cares, that someone is willing to listen and help, without being judgemental of the situation. To feel loved in spite of their situation.

Isn't this really what all of us who call ourselves Christians be doing? If we are to follow Christ's example then the answer is yes. Did He not leave the example that we should forsake our own desires and act compassionately toward those who are suffering? Sometimes this means forgiving when you really don't want to or saying you are sorry over a simple misunderstanding. Sometimes it is simply admitting that you can understand a different point of view.

The life of Christ reflects for Christians the very essence of the meaning of compassion, that has inspired many Christians throughout the centuries to care for the lame, deformed, broken-hearted, sick, dying and those who are in need. Christian compassion extends even to love of one's own enemies. What better way to show your faith than to have a little compassion for those that are suffering? Show some understanding for your fellow man and you will be blessed for it. After all, didn't Christ show more compassion for us when He took our place on the cross, than we could ever show for anyone? And our acts of compassion show that love of Christ to those around us. You never know when your actions just might lead someone else to know His love.

1 comment:

Cheryl said...

I loved this post. This is so true. Your words are so touching. Thank you for reminding me of the compassion that I need to show for others. God Bless!