When you were a kid you surely had at least one time when you did something dumb and ended up getting hurt in the process. Please tell me that I wasn't the only kid who did dumb things that turned into bloody messes.
I remember a time when I positioned a piece of glass on the floor of an old shed we had, then I looked up at my brother (who was perched on the roof and prepared to drop a brick through a hole in the roof) and said, "drop the brick". He told me that I needed to move or I'd get hit. I told him that I was just fine and he should go ahead and drop the brick. Like any good older brother would do he shrugged and released the brick, which did exactly what he said it would: HIT ME IN THE HEAD! I had an eyebrow that split open and started bleeding everywhere. My eye filled up with blood and I thought the brick had knocked my eye out. I ran for the house with my hand over my eye and blood flowing everywhere. My poor mother took a glance at me, heard the screaming, and also concluded that I'd poked my eye out. It all ended well and I got a sweet scar on my eyebrow to impress my friends with for years.
Something hit me recently about that story. (and it wasn't another brick) It never dawned on me to turn to my brother for compassion in that moment. I went running as fast as I could for the greatest source of compassion I could think of: My Mom. Instinct just kicked in. Nobody has to tell us to move towards compassion when we're hurting. When we are in pain we just want to feel loved and have someone care about our pain so much that they take immediate action on our behalf.
We live in a world full of people in pain. Have you ever watched someone and wondered why they seemed to compound one bad choice upon another? Most likely they're pursuing some form of escape from their pain. What if they saw Christians as the safest place to run to when they were in pain? What if Christians saw each other as the safest place to run to when they're hurting? We follow Jesus Christ who died for mankind in the most extravagant act of love and compassion ever, but we find it hard to show compassion for the people around us? Doesn't that seem odd? How will hurting people around us ever know the love and compassion of Jesus if they never experience it from us? We don't need another program or a different person in the Whitehouse. We simply need to see people the way God sees them. I think that He wants to show us how He feels about people and change our hearts to line up with His.
If you know someone who is hurting right now go out of your way to show some compassion this week.