‘He was moved with compassion for them.’ Matthew 9:36 NKJV
The New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance defines ‘compassion’ as being moved in one’s bowels (the bowels were thought to be the seat of love and pity). It shares a root with the word ‘splanchnology’, the study of the visceral [inner] parts of the body. Compassion, then, is a reaction from deep within—a kick in the gut, if you will. Perhaps that’s why we turn away when we see news reports of children starving in refugee camps, and hear about the 1.7 billion people who live on less than $1.65 a day and go to bed hungry every night. It’s too much for us—especially when we perceive the need as so overwhelming that we couldn’t begin to meet it.
But what if you could? What if you could make life better for one hurting person? ‘Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.’ (Acts 3:6–7 NKJV) What if Peter had said, ‘I have no silver or gold, so I’ll just keep my mouth shut and pass on by’? But he didn’t, and as a result a crippled man who’d sat begging for years rose up and walked into a new life.
You say, ‘But I don’t have that kind of power!’ No, but God does! And when you see someone’s need and reach out your hand to meet it—God will release His power! It’s your compassion that flips the switch. So, today, act with compassion.