“But Tziyon says, ‘Adonai has abandoned me, Adonai has forgotten me.’ Can a woman forget her child at the breast, not show pity on the child from her womb? Even if these were to forget, I would not forget you. I have engraved you on the palms of my hands, your walls are always before me.”
Are we more compassionate today then we were one hundred years ago? History gives us an indication of how those less fortunate than us were treated. Those, who had a different mental orientation than most of the population, were often treated poorly; shunned by many or displayed as ‘freaks’ in circus side shows.
Torah, though, teaches us a different form of behaviour. In Deuteronomy 22:6,7, we read If, as you are walking along, you happen to see a bird’s nest in a tree or on the ground with chicks or eggs, and the mother bird is sitting on the chicks or the eggs, you are not to take the mother with the chicks. You must let the mother go, but you may take the chicks for yourself; so that things will go well with you, and you will prolong your life. This is a very important verse. Through this we gather the meaning that even though this is considered a ‘light’ command, it has vast implications for our behaviours and approaches to others. If you look at the last section of verse 7, you see, so that things will go well with you, and you will prolong your life. What does this mean?
When we approach a weaker being, animal or human, we are required to treat it with kindness, even though we could, if we wished, extinguish its life. But with this mind set comes an understanding that we should be showing compassion to others, just as we would want compassion shown to us (Leviticus 19).
Compassion is an act of worship towards Adonai. Think about that, for a moment. Every act of compassion is an act of worship of God; it is as if He is receiving our compassion (Matthew 25). When we do not show compassion to those who are less fortunate than are we, it is as if we were slapping the face of our Messiah, Adonai Yeshua. And, yes, there are consequences for that.
So, we know compassion is an important aspect of our human life, both to give and receive. What is less clear, for many of us, is how we show our compassion. Here, we find a wide range of alternative approaches.
We could, if we wished, be like Buddhist monks and refuse to even step on an ant or earth worm, as we walk along. If you wish to share in this practice, please let no one criticize you or ‘put you down’ for doing that. Like the rest of us, our compassion is often shown to larger animals, young children, the poor and the destitute. We give funds to help them cope, regardless of their life-style choices or their circumstances. Some are there because of the choices they have made and some because of the choices others have made. It makes no difference. We have been commanded to help. Isaiah 1:17; Exodus 22:21-14; 1 Timothy 5:1-6, 21.
Beloved, it is our responsibility, as believers and as citizens, to show compassion to those who need it. Please allow yours to flow freely.
CONSIDER: Are you showing compassion to those around you, who are in need? Do you have a reluctance to be compassionate to those whom you believe have made bad choices?
ACT: Adonai and Adonai Yeshua make no differentiation between people, regardless of their life choices. Each is loved because they are His children. If God gives out His love and compassion to those in need, why wouldn’t we?
PRAY: Abba B’Shamayim, Heavenly Father, thank you so much for the compassion to show us, on a daily basis. Thank you for filling our lives with opportunities to display compassion to those around us, who are in need. I pray you stir me to be more compassionate and share my wealth with others, no matter how much I have. B’Shem Adonai Yeshua, Mashichainu. Amen
May the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob bless you fully and richly.