Updated: Aug 10
Who are you following? To whom are you listening? Whether we admit it or not, we are all followers. Today there are so many voices out there, trying to speak into our lives and gain followers. Maybe you follow a certain news station, talk show host, sports team, person on social media, etc. In each of their own ways, the mission is to gain followers and increase influence on their audience. Today, let me ask you this: How are you responding to your compassionate Savior, when he tugs on your heart and says, “Follow me”? Each day we are bombarded with so many choices of voices but there is only one voice that can truly lead you to life and peace; and that is the voice of a compassionate God.
2 Corinthians 1:3 (NIV2011) 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort.
Paul started this letter to the Corinthians by reminding them that our Father in heaven is a God of compassion and comfort. Often in scripture we see God long to show compassion to his children, even as they were making bad choices. Webster’s dictionary defines compassion as this: sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it. Our God is a God who sees our distress and wants to come along side us and bring us comfort, peace, love, and new life.
This compassionate God, sent his only Son, so that we can be saved and have a relationship with him forever. (John 3:16) As Jesus walked this earth, so many stories in the Bible radiate his compassion for people. He would look out on crowds….and be moved with compassion. (Matt 15:32) He would have compassion for the afflicted and heal them. (Mark 1:40)
Jesus was not blind to the distress or over-come with anger because of the sin and wickedness of the world. He was compassionate. In fact, on one particular occasion in Mark 6:34, Jesus was moved with compassion because he saw a crowd of people that he related to sheep without a shepherd. They needed guidance, compassion, and the love of a shepherd. Jesus, stepped out of the boat, and started teaching them. Compassion in action, in that moment, was teaching those who were lost about God.
Jesus wants to be the voice you listen to most. He desires to teach you of the love of the Father and the life that you can have in relationship with him. Through reading his Word and following his Holy Spirit, you can hear his voice beacon you in the direction he wants you to go.
Today, I challenge you, Beloved Warrior, to have compassion on others as Jesus did. As you respond to his “follow me” daily, look around at the distressed, hurting, and angry. Choose compassion. Choose to see past the exterior and what someone may be doing or saying. Choose to see the need for a Savior, the compassionate shepherd. May your response to those you encounter be tempered with compassion that teaches about a good, compassionate God who wants to guide each of us in this life