Compassion

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.  - Colossians 3:12
 
Most of us desire to be compassionate people, don’t we?  But do we know what compassion really is?  Henri Nouwen once wrote: “Compassion is hard because it requires the inner disposition to go with others to the place where they are weak, vulnerable, lonely, and broken.  But this is not our spontaneous response to suffering.  What we desire most is to do away with suffering by fleeing from it or finding a quick fix for it.  As busy, active, relevant. . . [people] we want to earn our bread by making a real contribution.  This means first and foremost doing something to show that our presence makes a difference.  And so we ignore our greatest gift, which is our ability to enter into solidarity with those who suffer.”
 
Showing compassion goes against our daily grind and our drive to achieve. It’s selfless, time consuming, and often not pleasant.  But it’s one of those double blessing things – you’ll bless another with your act of compassion, and you’ll be blessed in the process. 
 
“The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.” - Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965)
 

 

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Taken from The Life Recovery Devotional: Thirty Meditations from Scripture for Each Step in Recovery by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Copyright © 1991 by Stephen Arterburn and David Stoop. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.