Good afternoon, friends! It’s December 5th, also known as the 5th Day of Christmas. Today, we are staying on track with our 25 Days of Compassion and diving directly into the Word for some compassion understanding.
Day 5 of Compassion
- Today, we are going to look at 5 Bible stories that talk about Jesus’s acts of compassion. In order to become compassionate people, we can learn by example, and the best example of compassion is our Savior, Jesus Christ. In the Spirit of Christmas, we can start with the very existence of Christ Jesus in human form. His coming to earth and living among all of the sinful and imperfect beings is one of the most compassionate acts of kindness and love that He showed towards all of mankind. He stripped himself of all heavenly luxuries and entered our physical world to live out a life here and experience what we go through on a day to day basis. In my eyes, that is compassion. I honestly don’t know how many of us would give up a Heavenly residency for what we’ve got going on down here, but Jesus did that.
2 Corinthians 8:9 – For you know the undeserved kindness of our Lord Jesus Christ, that although he was rich, he became poor for your sake so that you might become rich through his poverty.
- Next, we can see compassion in Christ through the many miracles that He did not have to perform. He healed the blind, cured the sick, made the lame men walk again. These are not simple things. These are acts of a Being who is not only capable of good things but willing to make good things happen, even though He was scrutinized every time He performed a miracle. Can you imagine the way those people felt when Jesus took a moment to find favor in them and share a little compassion by giving them something as amazing as the ability to see for the very first time? These miracles bring so much glory to God, and in His glory, He shares compassion with us through these incredible miracles and healings.
John 9:11 – He replied, “The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see.”
Matthew 9:1-7 – Jesus stepped into a boat, crossed over and came to his own town.2 Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.” 3 At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, “This fellow is blaspheming!” 4 Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? 5 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 6 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.”
- One of my favorite things about Jesus is how He picked His crew. He didn’t find the most qualified (because there are none worthy). He didn’t seek our the Top 12 most famous prophets or preachers. He went into the “blue collar” jobs and found 12 very young men to be on His team. Did you know that every single disciple was under the age of 28 at the time of Jesus selecting them? WOW! That says so much to me about His selection process. His followers didn’t need to know what to do because Jesus planned on teaching them along the way. His way of serving others was by teaching them and leading by example. That’s compassion. Lifting up and seeking out the most unlikely people to be on your team and choosing them anyway.
Luke 6:12-15 – One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray and spent the night praying to God. When morning came, he called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them, whom he also designated apostles: Simon (whom he named Peter), his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called the Zealot, 16 Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.
- Jesus was not only a doer while He was here on earth in a physical form, but He was also a feeler. He experienced emotions and felt pain and emotional suffering. In terms of compassion, He felt compassion towards many people. For example, He was very compassionate and tender towards the poor, the hungry, and the needy. There are several accounts in scripture that talk about Jesus showing compassion in times of need, not just healing and performing miracles, but also showing empathy and compassion to those in mourning and for those who were suffering.
Matthew 9:35 – On seeing the crowds, he felt pity for them, because they were skinned and thrown about like sheep without a shepherd.
- Lastly, the ultimate act of sacrifice and compassion was when Jesus took his final breaths on the cross, when he walked through the streets of Jerusalem carrying a heavy cross that represented our sins, and when He begged for forgiveness on man’s behalf because He understood that man didn’t know. Compassion at its very greatest was represented on the cross that day, and it continues to live in the hearts of those who follow after Him. The ability to lay your life down for another person, even when they are ungrateful and so incredibly unworthy, is the most generous and complex expression of compassion.
Luke 23:33 – “When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals–one on his right, the other on his left.”
Luke 23:34 – “Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.”
Continue moving through your December with random acts of kindness and compassion opportunities. These are all really huge ways of how Jesus showed compassion, but not everything we do, actually… nothing we do will ever compare to these acts. However, we can allow these things to be our motivating factors for how we can become compassionate people. If Jesus can do all of these things for us, then we can do the simple things like helping out a neighbor, letting someone in front of you, and just smiling at complete strangers this season. Compassion is not very difficult to act out, and the more you share, the better your season will be this Winter.
– the Wife