Compassion. An easier word to define, than it is to live. Sure, it’s easy to have compassion for my children when they get hurt or someone hurts them. The motherly instinct takes over. Same with a friend. Compassion shows up in our society in many ways. Some feel compassion in their hearts and some show their compassion by getting involved. It reminds me of the book, “Same Kind of Different As Me”. LOVED that book!
I tend to teeter between compassion and judgment. Hard to admit, but it’s true. Those that do not choose what I think is “right” tend to receive less compassion (and often judgment) than those that fail while following the “right” path. Right in my eyes. Driving by the homeless begging my mind would judge. If only they would do _____, then _____. Fortunately, God has confronted me in this area and this time (because of course my heart has heard it before) I am working to change it.
Change. Not an easy thing to do, and often painful, but must happen if there is to be growth. Those that know me (and if you’re reading this you probably do), know that I’m not a fan of change. But being content where I am is no longer an option. It’s time to do things differently. To see things differently. To love differently. To live life differently. AND to show compassion differently.
Compassion does not mean that I agree or condone what someone is or is not doing. It does mean that I allow them the respect and dignity to choose their own path, but have compassion for where they are. Compassion for their pain. Compassion for their losses. Compassion for their reality. Compassion regardless of what I think they should do/be. I mean really, who am I to tell anyone how to live or what they should do? That is not my business.
Compassion is the vehicle to forgiveness. Without compassion forgiveness is almost impossible, or at least that’s how I see it. Both forgiveness and compassion bring freedom. A freedom to let others have their journey as their own. Freedom to be who I want to be and become, all the while having compassion for others.
Of course this is the way my Love would have me live. A lesson that’s been a long time in coming and one I’m sure He’s hoping I finally learn. He only knows how many times it’s been brought to my attention. Glad He has compassion for me; otherwise, He may have given up on me a long time ago. So glad he didn’t.
So for today I’m choosing compassion. Compassion that will eventually lead me into forgiveness. And it’s a great place to be right now.