Go There With Compassion

go there with compassion

go there with compassion

This devotion was written by Suella Jones.

It was an unusual sight even in the early 1950’s—a mother and her children walked along the country dirt road a few miles from the small town where they lived carrying a pot filled with home raised, home cooked vegetables. Two of the older children each had a hold of the pot’s handles; another child carried some freshly baked cornbread. The mother was holding the hand of the youngest child and carrying other items she thought would be needed. They were headed to the home of a family who had very little and had run out of food. The mother had heard of the family’s situation and although her own family had little in the way of material goods, she knew she could at least share what she did have. Obviously there was the lack of a car for transportation, hence the walking. Some would say they didn’t have enough to share. But this mother believed what the Scriptures taught about loving your neighbor. Her heart was to share Christ’s love and to show His love to those in need.

You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord. – Leviticus 19:18

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. – John 13:34

This woman was my mother. I remember walking those dusty roads thinking it was a grand adventure not understanding her ministry until years later. My mother understood the call to “Go There” and not only taught it to her children, but demonstrated it through her actions.

The times in my life when I thought I had nothing to offer or no practical way to help, I would be reminded of Mother’s resourcefulness and her desire to share Christ. She had a big family of her own to take care of and no money to offer others, but she did not see these things as obstacles when it came to helping those in need and sharing with them Christ’s love for all.

This childhood scene came to mind recently as I was listening to Pastor McKinley’s sermons on “Go There.” He told us about the many references in the Gospels and throughout the Scriptures where the word “go” is used.

We can all cite the one from Matthew 28: 19 that says, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.”

Maybe you are a young mother and you are thinking that going into the world at this time in your life is not only impossible, but also totally impractical and you would be right. Your first responsibility should be on your family. Don’t think that you are left out when it comes to sharing God’s love with others. The times and opportunities may be limited, but not impossible. Social media alone gives us opportunity to be a witness or to encourage a friend. This is an obvious one. But I would encourage you to think of ways, to indeed pray for other opportunities where you can “Go There.” It could be as simple as making extra servings of the meal you are preparing for your family and taking it to a neighbor or friend going through a rough time. That is what my mother was doing that day.

I have found in my life it is not a lack of opportunity or means but a matter of having a heart like Christ. In Matthew 9 we read where Jesus had been dealing with many who needed healing, both physically and spiritually and to whom He had been teaching proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom. Then in Matthew 9:36 it says this about Jesus’ heart: “Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd.” I don’t need to be concerned with what I view as my weaknesses or shortcomings. I just need to be willing and obedient and trust Him to provide not only the way and the resources, but mostly the conversation needed to minister to people around me. I need to have a heart of compassion.

I think of the people looking out a window at Doctor’s Hospital as the traffic passes on I-20—people who are burdened with the sickness of a loved one. I don’t know their names, but when I drive my car along this stretch of road I pray for these individuals. There are many people we come in contact with daily whether by accident or by appointment. Jesus said, in Matthew 5:14, “You are the light of the world…” and Acts 1:8 tells us “you are my witnesses.” Go where you can and be the light, the witness to the world around you.

God showed my mother how she could help those around her though she had little resources and her own family to care for and feed. Ask and He will show you how you can “Go There” with compassion for the distressed and dispirited helping them in practical ways while showing them the way to Eternal Life in Christ Jesus.

Suella Jones