It has been a while since I’ve written on my blog. I’ve been compelled to be “silent” and reflect and be in the moment to seek understanding. Silence in a noisy world has been proven to heal the brain. Just Google “Your brain and silence,” and you will find many articles and research. Something I’m practicing and learning more about. (Golden: The Power of Science in a World of Noise)

Today, I wanted to journal…

What is compassion, really?

The Latin root is “pati,” which means to suffer. The prefix “com” means “with.” Compassion means to suffer with. Yet, compassion moves beyond the emotional connection to a strong desire to do something to help ameliorate someone’s suffering.

Suffering is a word that conjures up images. Each of us would share examples that are personal and worldwide. I’ve come to understand that suffering is unique to the individual’s lived experiences, culture, context, and overall well-being. It is their individual journey with God. Where does compassion come into practice or look like?

For me, it’s the journey and the intentional connections we make to seek understanding and healing. I sat in a coffee shop with my best friend talking through life and “the journey.” She is a great role model of compassion, not only to me but to so many. It was time, communion, asking questions, and sharing her love that moved me toward another step.

From that moment, my soul and mind began to listen to my intentional readings for answers and healing. When you feel seen and heard, your heart is open to healing. In the movie Jesus Revolution, the question was posed to the pastor, “How desperate would you need to be to seek God?” Good question. In our suffering or desperation, we are more open to change and seeking. This was also a scene that depicted the communion of compassionate, intimate conversation.

Compassion is what we reach for when patience has run out. We can rage, vent, check out, or give up. God reminds us to “clothe ourselves in compassion.”

Colossians 3:12

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.

When someone sits with you in your suffering, they give you the strength to do the same.

Compassion is letting go of resentments and unrealistic expectations. It’s noticing the good instead of listing the flaws. Allowing the flaws to make you a better person and perhaps set boundaries, change direction, or make hard decisions.

Compassion is giving someone the dignity to be on their journey without obsessing over or controlling them. I’m reminded of the 3 Ps from another recent reading.

Personal, Perfect, Permanent.

The next time you are in a situation where you are grasping at control and grip with emotions, ask yourself, am I taking this personally? Do I desire perfection? Do I believe this is permanent? You can’t control another person’s behavior (Personal). None of us has reached the place of perfection. And events, behaviors, and moods come and go. This moment is not permanent and will not last. All of the moments are a part of the journey. All of them. Even the ones you’ve had to humbly apologize for and make amends.

Compassion can be grand acts. They can also be in your daily walk. I believe truth and kindness are in the simplest of acts. A phone call, a cup of coffee, a random text, a smile, a prayer in the darkest of the night for a loved one. It’s looking beyond yourself to notice who and what is around you–your realm of influence and how you can extend your heart and hand at the moment. Sometimes it’s being quiet and trusting God to work. And, yes, sometimes it’s removing yourself from the chaos to care for yourself and allow self-compassion to flood your soul. Jesus role-modeled going away to quiet places to rest.

As helpers, we can get off balance. That’s that personal, perfect, permanent thing in your mind and an unrealistic sense of control. Release it like the blowing away of the dandelion seed. I’ve recently enjoyed the visualization of release versus letting go. For some reason, the word release honors the emotions, and the release is in not letting the emotions control you. The greatest gift you can give the world is self-compassion, knowing your worth, and living in the knowledge that you are loved. From this place, you have more capacity to embrace healthy compassion for others.

The recent moments in my life of great compassion and kindness:

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Tamara says:

    I love how you allow the Lord to speak so beautifully through you ❣️ Thank you as always for sharing your heart so transparently ❣️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tamara, thank you for your prayers and your openness to share His love through great compassion!


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