By Karen Polich
Who are you looking out for?
We know compassion is typically inconvenient and inefficient. If we are looking for easy, compassion rarely travels the easy road. When we stop for compassion, life takes on a different pace. Compassion throws off our routine from the normal and may ask a lot from us.
Compassion can also be a magnetic force. It can alter a bad moment or transform a life.
Pastor Michael Cook’s sermon series, Compassionate Community examines the idea of living a life of radical compassion. Listen to the podcast here. We learn what believers in the early days of the Church did to help those in need.
The “what” is impressive, but the bigger question is, “why”?
All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need. Acts 4:32-35
Why were they motivated to live a life full of compassion?
Their compassionate community stemmed from three things.
- Compassion envisioned by Jesus. The idea came directly from Jesus. He demonstrated compassion from His days on earth to His ascension into heaven.
- Compassion is fueled by grace. Until you receive God’s grace, you cannot give it away. Jesus looks out for you, ready to offer grace.
- Compassion is empowered by the Holy Spirit. Acts 1:8 We are equipped to help through the Holy Spirit.
You are His forgiven, empowered, beloved child.
Compassion is a life changer. Through Him, we can bring about a compassionate community, which sees the needs of those around us and stops to make a difference.
Carry each others burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2