Monday, July 8, 2013

When Compassion Calls Will You Hang Up?

Recently I logged onto Facebook and saw a post from someone I know. She was venting about some things in her life that she wasn't happy about. Normally I would have felt inclined to write a private exhortation about how I had been there...etc. But, on this particular occasion I just said in my mind "Girl! Do you know what I have been through?" For now when Facebook asks “What's on your mind?” you better take that as a rhetorical question! 

Yeah, I know that wasn't so nice but I knew exactly how she felt because I have been there. I suppressed the desire to reach out because 1) I was in a hurry and 2) I felt it was a learning process and we are all being taught different lessons so I should just face my exam while she faces hers.

It’s funny, because shortly after a contributor sent me Simon and the Unnamed Woman and I realised I couldn't get this friend of mine off my mind. So I reached out. How many times do we turn our backs or shut our eyes because we are in a hurry? Is God impressing something on your spirit but you just can't be bothered? The over cultivation of the flesh (intellect) has led many of us to suppress some of our emotions. While this might come in useful sometimes let’s keep our eyes on Jesus and what he expects of us in our relationships.

God gave us emotions for a reason. In fact, everything God gave, He gave for a reason, including what you have been through. The Bible records that Jesus was moved by compassion and healed their sick. Partly on account of their bodily infirmities, which were very many and great; and partly on account of the bad situation they were in. The provisions of Christ's gospel appear mean and scanty to the world, yet they satisfy all that feed on him in their hearts by faith with thanksgiving. And we are called to spread this.

I challenge each Christian reading this to desist from hiding yourselves from your own flesh, look at the compassion that has been showered on your lives and thank God for it and reach out. Compassion is a powerful emotion not a passive feeling You don't need to jump onto the next bus waving your Bible or be the next Princess Diana, in your Armani jeans hugging orphaned children in severely war torn countries. When you encounter “less than loving” behavior directed towards you, try to see the injury or insecurity in the person you are dealing with, see that they are lashing out because of it. Try to feel genuine sympathy for  each other's struggles. You might even find yourself wanting to help.  It may be by some words of wisdom, a scripture that brought you through a time like that, or with your knees to the ground fervently praying for them. Right where you are, in your life, these opportunities are placed before you. What will you do with them? 

By Ijeoma Olujekun

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