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From the Pastor's Desk

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Good Morning Pioneer Baptist!

It’s called Compassion!

It’s a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering, and Jesus had it in spades! When He saw the multitudes as sheep having no shepherd, Jesus was moved with compassion. When He saw them sick, He was moved with compassion. When the prodigal came home in the parable, the father (a picture of God) “had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.” Yes, Jesus had true compassion!

But my favorite compassion story is that of the father whose son (Mark 9:17) had “a dumb spirit.” (That’s what the Devil can do and that’s what he does do to folks.) And in this case the spirit tore at the boy so that he would foam at his mouth, grind his teeth, and had even been thrown into the fire to be burned and into the water to be drowned. The disciples were powerless to help the boy, and the father turned to Jesus, begging, “…but if thou canst do anything, have compassion on us, and help us.” Maybe you’ve been there before: your son or your daughter needed help desperately, and your love for him/her was so strong that you desperately needed help as well! “…Have compassion on US!” I know you can identify with that heartbroken father! Jesus told the father that if he believed, all things were possible, “And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.” And you know Jesus took care of the problem!

Compassion, by definition and through the example of Jesus, is so much more than an emotional feeling. In every case, Christ was “moved” with compassion. The father of the prodigal “moved” to meet and welcome his son. In other words, he “did something.” True compassion is not just feeling empathy, it is reaching out with a helping hand, and at times that helping hand is simply a listening ear and a holding hand. We’re humans, we cannot do everything, but we can always do something!

Jesus could work physical miracles. We haven’t even mentioned the widow at Nain and her extreme heartbreak at seeing her only son in a casket. We, of course, can’t raise a widow’s son as Jesus did, but we can have true compassion, we can care about the desperate lady, we can hold her hand, we can look into her eyes and take time to talk, and more than talk, to listen. We can bring some flowers, and we can show up at the funeral and we can be a shoulder for her to cry on.

Jesus didn’t just “have” compassion, He was “moved with compassion.” As followers of Jesus, shouldn’t we be likewise moved? Isn’t that what we really want to do? I think so! It's a part of true love.

Love to you all,


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