By Shelly Morse, CFDM Alum and Board Member
Be Compassionate just as your Father is compassionate. Luke 6:36
The life of the beloved is one of compassion. There is so much grief, poverty, and loss in this life, but we can offer another the great gift of not having to walk alone in their need. That is the gift of compassion. We have been well equipped for this because we have been loved well by God.
Compassion takes on many different forms, but caring seems to me to be one of the most basic human responses to a God that loves me, and for another made in that same God’s image. I care when I am present to the one who suffers, and when I stay present, even though I cannot change their circumstances. Often we are not able to fix the problem for another but we are always able to care.
I have found great joy in walking alongside those in need. It is true that I have received more than I have given. I am deeply grateful that God has designed this life in such a way that I get the opportunity to be Christ’s ambassador on this earth. Deep joy is the secret gift of compassion! It’s no wonder that God calls us to love our neighbor.
Caring is born out of relationship. The core meaning of care is to “be with” a person who is suffering or needy. To care means therefore to hear another’s cry. Who do you hear crying? Is there someone God has put near you that needs your presence in their painful circumstance? I challenge you to connect with another’s need and care.
How do you and I live what God asks in passages such as Micah 6:8? “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” How do we live a merciful, just and humble life towards the powerless and broken? I believe God has made it possible through his great love for us. Because we have been loved well and because He is such a deep well for us to draw from, we can be present with, listen to, and embrace another in their need.
Caring is all about being present to one who is powerless, accepting that we may not be able to take their pain away, but we can surely be willing to share it.