Compassion can be tricky. On the surface, it seems commonplace and easily attainable. We all have experienced a tinge of compassion at one point or another in our lives: when we witnessed a friend in mourning, a child in distress, or an innocent bystander being victimized. But is that all there is to compassion, a single pang of empathy?
Jesus demonstrated a much more complex version of compassion. For him, compassion was an action. It involved feeding the hungry, caring for the widows, reaching out to the sick, and aiding the poor. Perhaps these commands weren’t just meant as metaphors, but as real-life instructions for “hand-dirtying” compassion.
Jesus also made it clear that compassion has no boundaries. It’s easy enough to care for those who we call our friends and family, but what about people who are different from us, people who make us uncomfortable, and people who we do not like- are they beyond the limits of our compassion?
In his book, Abba’s Child, Brennan Manning wrote, "The heartfelt compassion that hastens forgiveness matures when we discover where our enemy cries."
One of the truest tests of our faith is our love and compassion for those around us.
Have a blessed day!