Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Compassion - Love in Action

Dictionary definition for compassion: a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.

Andrew Murray said, “Compassion is the spirit of love which is awakened by the sight of need or wretchedness. What abundant occasion is there every day for the practice of this heavenly virtue, and what a need of it in a world so full of misery and sin! Every Christian ought therefore by prayer and practice to cultivate a compassionate heart, as one of the most precious marks of likeness to the blessed Master. Everlasting love longs to give itself to a perishing world, and to find its satisfaction in saving the lost. It seeks for vessels which it may fill with the love of God, and send out among the dying that they may drink and live forever. It asks hearts to fill with its own tender compassion at the sight of all the need in which sinners live, hearts that will reckon it their highest blessedness, as the dispensers of God’s compassion, to live entirely to bless and save sinners. O my brother, the everlasting compassion which has had mercy on thee calls thee, as one who has obtained mercy, to come and let it fill thee. It will fit thee, in thy compassion on all around, to be a witness to God’s compassionate love.” (Like Christ: In His Compassion. Andrew Murray).

Depending on the bible version you use there are more than 90 specific references to compassion in the Bible. Most Old Testament verses refer to the Lord's compassion toward His people and most New Testament verses refer to Jesus' compassion on those in need. Let's look at just a few.

The Lord will always have compassion on us. (2 Kings 13:23, Nehemiah 9:27, Psalm 103:13, Isaiah 54:8)
Jesus felt compassion to those in need. (Matthew 9:36, 14:14, 15:32-39, 20:34, Mark 6:34, 8:2, Luke 15:20, etc.)
Those who walk with the Lord will have compassion. (Ephesians 4:32, Colossians 3:12-13, Philippians 2:1-2, 1 Peter 3:8)
Compassion fulfills the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)

The compassionate heart is wanting. Compassion looks upon the deepest misery as the place prepared for her by God, and is attracted by it. Compassion never wearies, never gives up hope. Compassion will not allow itself to be rejected, for it is the self-denying love of Christ which inspires it. Adrew Murray

In short – Compassion is Love in Action! He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.” 1 John 2:6

Think of a person you know who is in need. What tends to keep you and/or others from being compassionate to this person? From what we have just read above and the scriptures, what changes do you and or others need to make within yourselves in order for to help that person who is in need?

Dear Heavenly Father, help me to be more compassionate... Love in Action... May I not be compassionate in word only, but in deed. May I follow your example by doing something about the needs of others..... Love in Action... Compassion.... In Jesus name, Amen.

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Beth in NC said...

That is a great post Michele! I love the quote, "Compassion is the spirit of love that is awakened" ... so true.


luvmy4sons said...

Good stuff...we all need to show forth more compassion...this world needs lots more of it and certainly the church should lead the way!

Laurie Ann said...

What a great study on compassion! I'm printing this one off to keep for sure! Thanks so much for this lesson. I praise God for His compassion for us, for sending His Son who was Compassion in action! May we follow His example! Happy WFW!

He & Me + 3 said...

I do need to put my compassion into action and not just say I feel it, but do something with that feeling. Great post. Praying for you! Feel better.

Sunny Shell said...

Amen precious sister Michele,

COMPASSION...what we all definitely need! Literally, it means "com" = with; "passion" = suffering....therefore when we have compassion on others, we are suffering with them...just as Christ Jesus our God, suffered with and for us.

What a fabulous reminder today sister! Thank you! ♥

MJ said...

Fabulous post! It certainly hits home for me.

Anonymous said...

makes me think of that Brandon heath Song "Give me your eyes"

Give me your eyes for just one second,
Give me your eyes so I can see,
Everything that I keep missing,
Give your love for humanity.
Give me your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach.
Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten.
Give me Your eyes so I can see.

its on the player on my blog just FYI

LisaShaw said...

This is a beautiful message. I always use the expression that love is an action word and compassion is indeed part of that love on the move!

Love ya.

Rebecca said...

I love that God has compassion on us, a strong desire to alleviate our suffering. Great post!

Corner Gardener Sue said...

This is an awesome post! I have been leading a group that cooks and serves meals at a local outreach center several times a year. Your post reminded me that God wants us to practice compassion daily in our attitudes toward others.

Amydeanne said...

great post!

Anonymous said...

His compassions fail not....we have someone to follow, an example is set each sunrise.
Lovely thoughts and fantastic picture.

LauraLee Shaw said...

This is exceptional. Thank YOU!!! I truly long to have a heart of compassion...not one of apathy or full of self.

Marsha said...

I love Andrew Murray's writings. Thank you for this beautiful post.
Love you more!