In days gone by, whenever I perceived someone as weak, immature, or needy, I struggled. My natural man tends to form an opinion (albeit hopefully not wearing it on my sleeve). Each of us has been given varying degrees of compassion.
— 1 Peter 3:8 all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit
Some people have the gift of mercy; for others of us it’s slow coming. For me to get it, God had to enroll me in the School of Hard Knocks.
Thanks to the Wonderful Mind of God, my life took a turn or two. Those turns turned into a Compassion Crash Course. It’s pathetic, I know, but I was somewhat clueless—until I experienced the real deal, first-hand. Now I see it—in spades.
— 1 Peter 4:8 love covers a multitude of sins.
The change has been dramatic. Oh, don’t get me wrong: I’m still no Florence Nightingale. But I’ve got to tell you: having been through the gauntlet, I’m not so quick to “assess.” In our depraved minds we are blinded—and often have the audacity to point our bony finger at what we can’t even see. However, coming out on the other side, we get a dual vantage point.
— Psalm 103:14 For He Himself knows our frame; He is mindful that we are but dust.
Amazing, undeserved mercy was extended to me at the cross. That cross proves God’s love, and His empathy.
— Matt. 9:36 He felt compassion for them
He knows—and He’s showing me through personal experience—what it feels like to be despised and rejected. With these freshly opened eyes, I’m looking at people in a whole new light. I can overlook immaturity; I can identify with depression; I can sympathize with sorrow.
— Rom. 12:15 weep with those who weep.
The School of Hard Knocks has very high tuition; I’m still paying. My advice? Homeschool: you’ve already got the Textbook.