Motivated by Compassion
" When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things."
~ Mark 6:34 (NIV)
Sometimes I think Christians regard nonbelievers as the enemy. Preachers will rant and rave about certain sins people are committing. But let’s remember something: behind that sin is an empty, searching, lost person whom God loves.
We are not called to condemn. We are called to appeal to nonbelievers with the message of the gospel. We need compassion. Jesus had it overflowing from His life. He was moved by the needs of others.
When He saw Mary and Martha weeping over the death of their brother, Lazarus, He “was deeply moved in spirit and troubled” (John 11:33). That phrase carries the idea of physical, emotional, and spiritual anguish. Jesus is the only one who can accurately say, “I feel your pain.” As He watched Mary and Martha weeping, His heart went out to them. He was in anguish, too. He hurt for them. He hurt with them. And He wept. That’s our Savior.
Jesus knew the same crowds in Jerusalem who cried out, “The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Hosanna in the highest heaven!” (Matthew 21:9) would soon shout, “Crucify Him!”
Yet He felt compassion, saying, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.” (Matthew 23:37).
Paul wrote to the Philippians, “have the same mindset as Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). We should seek to imitate the Lord and have compassion.
If we want to be used by God in any capacity, this must be foremost in our minds and hearts—not obligation, not mere duty, not guilt, but a God-given burden for people.
Lord, I am so full of doubt and sin that I sometimes forget: There is always someone weaker in their faith than I am, some brother or sister whom I can help, someone I can support and lift up in their journey. I pray that I might be aware that my fellow saints may need encouragement and that I be qualified to give it. Let me not be critical or judgmental, but supportive and helpful to those struggling.In Jesus,
And I pray, let me always remember that someone might be hiding a struggle, a fear, a sorrow; let me offer words of encouragement and support freely. Let me remember that there are people who hide their insecurity behind a wall of serenity, or defensiveness, or even antagonism, to whom a word of support might make a world of difference.
In Christ's name, I pray, Amen
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Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
If we want to be used by God, we must have compassion.