Compassion Freely Given: What Are You Doing For Others?

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  • Lent 2018: Compassion

Compassion Freely Given: What Are You Doing For Others?

Open Your Eyes: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”  Martin Luther King, Jr.

There are two lakes in Israel. One is the Sea of Galilee and the other is the Dead Sea. They are both fed by the Jordan River.  Around the Sea of Galilee is where much of Jesus’ ministry was centered.  Life around those villages was and still is based on fishing.  The Sea of Galilee is alive.

At the bottom of the Jordan River lies the Dead Sea.  It is the exact opposite of the Sea of Galilee.  The only human inhabitants that chose to live in that area during the times of Jesus were the Essenes.  They had fled the corruption of Jerusalem and picked the most isolated place to live out their lives in study and prayer.  The lived in the many caves around the Dead Sea.  It’s an area void of life.

There is one main difference between these two lakes.  The Sea of Galilee feeds the Jordan River with fresh water.  Water that gives life.   The Dead Sea is a taker.  It just receives without releasing. This same principle applies to our lives.   Compassion is a gift from God provided to us without reservation.  There is a catch; however, if we keep this gift we will become like the Dead Sea.  This gift is to be shared.

Call to Action:  I started this week’s Devotion with a “God Moment” and God has compelled me to finish with one.  I was struggling with the way the Devotion was ending and that is where God came to my rescue.  Today, in church, the Covenant Choir sung a beautiful anthem, The Children of the World, by Dr. Terre Johnson.  Read the words from this anthem and think about Dr. King’s question, “What are you doing for others”.

If somewhere a child is hungry or isn’t tucked in, safe and warm; if somewhere a baby’s crying, longing for a parent’s arms; that is where the love of Jesus must be shared by you and me, for if we have plenty, love and safety, we must share with the least of these.

In a world so rich with blessings, where there is plenty to be shared; from our lives of such abundance, we can offer love and care. For we know the love of Jesus can be shared with our own hands, we can share our blessings, help our neighbor, be the hands of Christ to them.

The children of the world are our children, made by God, just like you and me. The children of the world must be fed and held and loved, for if one of them is hungry, so are we.

Prayer:  Father, we ask that you open our eyes, our ears, and our hearts to our neighbor.   In Jesus’ name we pray.

Romans 4:13-25
Saturday March 3, 2018
Ed Hamlin

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