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When the Lord saw her, he had compassion for her and said to her, “Do not weep.”
— Luke 7:13 (NRSV)
“A Mother’s Love” was the caption above a calendar photo of a Ugandan woman as she sat comforting her sick child in a hospital bed. The tenderness in her face as she gently held his hand pulled at my heartstrings.
I had also just read the newsletter of a different charity that told the story of the director of a small school for the deaf in a South American country. For the first time in seven years he had begun the new school year with enough food in the cupboard to feed his pupils for a month. Imagine the struggle he had month after month, year after year, to provide necessities for the children placed in his care.
Personal stories like these make a powerful impact on us because we can empathize with real people. Too often we think about these issues in terms of statistics, which can leave us overwhelmed and untouched by their impersonal presentation. Jesus didn’t focus on statistics; he cared about people as individuals, as we see in his compassion for the grieving widow he met on this occasion.
Christ continues to call us today to have active compassion for the hungry, the suffering, the abandoned — by focusing on one child, one family, one lonely person who needs our love and help right now.
Daily devotionals from The Upper Room