My best friend is currently fostering two kitties. The shelter won’t take them unless they are two pounds, so she gathered them in her arms and took them home.
I wish my heart was more like hers.
Instead of welling up in tears over the life of the poor kitten, I think about how I’d have to clean up after it and feed it. I excuse my indifference by telling myself I am too busy to cradle a homeless cat.
I don’t have to save the kittens of this world because Barby does.
The problem is that my complete apathy carries over into almost every corner of my heart.
I don’t have to rescue the girl on the street. Christine Caine does that.
I can go get my nails done while Lori Harris feeds that kid who looks different from me.
I tell myself that God is okay because I toss a dime to Compassion International every month and scrawl a quick note to the girl whose picture hangs on my refrigerator.
My heart does not well up with compassion for the hurting. I’d rather just channel surf.
Yesterday, Kristan reminded me of a passage that God has slowly been imprinting on my dry and dusty heart:
Anyone who sets himself up as “religious” by talking a good game is self-deceived.
This kind of religion is hot air and only hot air.
Real religion, the kind that passes muster before God the Father, is this:
Reach out to the homeless and loveless in their plight,
and guard against corruption from the godless world.
James 1:26-27, MSG
I can’t imagine Christ putting on His sunglasses at the red light when the homeless guy is on the corner.
Jesus wept with the hurting and walked into the pain of others.
His heart welled up with compassion.
Because my well runneth dry, I asked God to show me the way to a welled-up heart. Here’s a top 10 list that will help you “fight the ugly” as you apply it to your heart.
10 Qualities of a Heart Welled Up with Compassion
- Steps toward the broken and battered with grace (Luke 15:20)
- Forgives readily recognizing our failures require forbearance (Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3:2)
- Grieves with the hurting in harmonious humility (I Peter 3:8)
- Responds to pain and moves in to alleviate suffering (Luke 10:33-34)
- Protects the helpless and lost (Matthew 9:36)
- Loves sacrificially with eyes that view another’s need as your responsibility (I John 3:17)
- Honors others with the kind heart of a servant (Philippians 2:1-3)
- Extends mercy to those who doubt (Jude 1:22)
- Applies a healing balm to the weary and wounded (Matthew 20:34)
- Rescues the perishing (Proverbs 24:11-12)
A heart welled up with compassion overflows to the world and showers the least of these with His kindness and mercy.
Something to think about…
I’m sharing “Welled Up with Compassion” with like-minded friends at Faith-Filled Friday.
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