Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Daily Thought: Cultivate Compassion

Compassion is the spirit of love that is awakened by the sight of need or wretchedness.  What abundant opportunities there are every day to practice this heavenly virtue, and what need there is for it in a world so full of misery and sin!  Every Christian ought therefore by prayer and practice to cultivate a compassionate heart, as one of the most precious marks of likeness to the blessed Master.

Opportunities for showing compassion are all around us.  There are poor and sick, widows and orphans, distressed and despondent—people who need more than anything the refreshment a compassionate heart can bring.  Pray earnestly for a compassionate heart, always ready to be an instrument of divine compassion.  It was the compassionate sympathy of Jesus that attracted so many to Him on earth.  That same compassionate tenderness will still draw people to you and to your Lord.

Andrew Murray, The Best of Andrew Murray, Cook Communications (2005), p. 49

2 comments:

CreativeLee said...

I've been seeing things so much differently lately; I think God is opening my eyes more. I've been hearing 'Christians' tell of how God delivered them from demons and stuff and yet looking at another in desperate need of God's delivering power and judging them as having to "pull themselves together" - as if they have to do that so that God can do (whatever). It really made me ask myself: Am I like that?

All of us are sinners drowning and lost, in desperate need of God's grace and salvation. He is like a life boat on the ocean of life. He comes by and rescues one, then, once he's in the boat, he turns around and wants to prevent another drowning one from getting in - as if he wants to have the whole boat to himself.

I thought that the more God saves you from, the deeper your gratefulness should be and the more compassion you should have for those who are still where you used to be. (Not think that now you're somehow superior and someone else is less deserving of God's grace.)

My question to myself was: what are we doing AFTER God's grace? Are we having compassion because we've been there and God saved us - "If He could do it for me, He can do it for you?" - or are we somehow feeling entitled and not sharing the answer that we found in Christ? Aren't we supposed to be the light, the salt, the difference? Yet we stand and judge. My heart cry is "God, may I be part of the solution, not the problem." Jesus came for the sick, the cripple, the bent, the sinner - not to be clicky with the Pharisees. It made me ask myself: what are we doing? What would Jesus have done if He was in our situation?

I think He would have reached out and made the invitation. The choice remains the person's, but extending the invitation is what Jesus does - He says "COME - JUST AS YOU ARE."

We can't change people, but we can invite them into the life boat. What they do with it is between them and God in the end, but have we invited, or have we judged, somehow thinking that we deserved our salvation? Isn't that precisely what the Bible says - saved by grace so that no one can boast, except in the cross - Jesus!

Wow! has this been weighing on my heart lately...

Paul Steele said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I certainly agree with them.

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