Don't just wear your heart on your sleeve. Get dressed with the compassion of Jesus.
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion. Colossians 3:12
Does compassion come naturally to you? Even though some of us tend to be more empathetic than others, compassion is a different story. And Jesus tells us to get dressed in it.
Compassion is not feeling sorry for someone. It is not a moment of empathy where your heart goes out to another person. No, it goes much farther and deeper than that. You see, compassion is not a human-sourced feeling. It has its source in Jesus.
That's why you have to put on HIS clothes of compassion. When you put on the compassion of Jesus, he begins to share his heart of pain and love for a person. His burden becomes yours. If you do not have the compassion of Jesus, all of your humanitarian efforts at helping the oppressed will not last. Dressed in Jesus' clothes of compassion, though, you can have a profound, long-lasting impact on individuals and communities.
What does the compassion of Jesus look like? Matthew 9:36 says, "When he [Jesus] saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd." The "compassion" that Jesus had was literally a gut-wrenching pain that moved him into action. Jesus was constantly with crowds of hurting people. But, he never became immune to their pain. Jesus gained his Father's heart for the lost and hurting. That's how he could keep ministering in the face of such crushing need.
If you wear Jesus' clothes of compassion, you will begin feeling how he feels about the lost and hurting of our world. But, more specifically, you will be led to take action to relieve the pain and suffering. Clothes of compassion are meant to get dirty. Compassion intervenes in someone's life with the hand of Jesus.
How could you show compassion today? A listening ear, a hand of service, a prayer for healing, a hot meal given to the hungry? First, tell Jesus that you want to wear his clothes of compassion. Then ask him for his idea of showing that compassion to others. You can write this prayer down in the "Comments" section below.
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