We are currently exploring practical, biblical examples of our church’s mission: taking the life-changing reality of Jesus to our neighborhoods, our cities, and our world. Specifically, we’re focusing on eight verbs vital for anyone passionately living to reach others for Christ.
The world is significantly impacted by the Christian who gives and lives with compassion. Even though we give attention to the massive organizations that do so, compassion actually best happens everyday, anonymously, by each of us.
In Luke 7, Jesus demonstrates three steps of compassion:
- See the need (Luke 7:11-13). We are known to be followers of Jesus not by how much we know about the Bible, but rather by how much we move out compassionately towards others.
- Feel the need (Luke 7:13). The English word “compassion” comes from two Latin words which literally means “suffering with” others- we need to see long enough to feel. Each of us has been brought through a unique set of personal experiences so that we can have compassion for others.
- Act on the need (Luke 7:13). When Jesus acts, he breaks custom, religious law, molds, and stereotypes, all the while hurting his own reputation, future well being, and any possibility of personal gain. As Soren Kierkegaard observed, “love in Christ was pure action.”
Let’s challenge ourselves to be more aware of needs, feel the pains of others, and then act. Let’s move out- from internal growth to external action through increasingly compassionate lives for Christ.
- Which charitable organizations have you worked with or contributed to in the past? What is it about those organizations that inspire you?
- When considering opportunities to move out and meet the needs of others, two questions can be helpful: “what am I passionate about?” and “what breaks my heart?” How would you answer those questions?
- What steps could you take to become more consistent in seeing, feeling, and acting on behalf of those around you?