“You are such a compassionate woman.”
Well thank you for that compliment.
But what does that word mean?
Is it that I have a heart? Is it because I empathize with people and their lives?Is it because I’m lenient about things that other people would condemn?
Dictionary.com defines compassion as: “a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.”
Good definition, I like it. But I’m still not sure I fully grasp it.
Lets look to the Bible for more intelligibility.
The Old Testament words used for compassion also mean to love, to love deeply, have mercy, have tender affection, to pity, to spare…. This is where it gets interesting.
Compassion is also defined as mercy, womb, bowels, and pity.
What?? What does womb and bowels have to do with compassion???
Maybe the New Testament words will bring some more understanding.
When Jesus was looking over Jerusalem, the Bible says he was moved with compassion. That word compassion means: “to be moved as to one’s bowels, hence to be moved with compassion, have compassion (the bowels were thought to be the seat of love and pity.)”
As strange as it sounds, I believe that this does bring some clarity and answers a lot of the questions we started out with. When Jesus was moved with compassion, it was not just a warm fuzzy feeling. There was urgency, a need to move, a need to do something to relieve the need. It was an overwhelming desire to help, to relieve, to heal, to fix, to bring peace to the people.
Jesus didn’t just stare at the people and think, “Wow, how sad. They’re like sheep without a shepherd. Bummer.” And then go on his merry way. Jesus was MOVED. He did something about it.
Compassion is a verb.
It is a frantic feeling of necessity that must be acted upon quickly or certain destruction will ensue. At least that’s what I think when it compares compassion with bowel movements…just saying.
So when we as Christians say we have compassion, and claim to love our neighbors as ourselves… Are we doing anything about it? Compassion is an action, and it cannot be ignored or glanced over.
If we have compassion on our friends and family, are we doing everything possible to ensure that they hit the mark, and make it to heaven?
If we have compassion on our country, do we get out there and stand for truth, do our part and vote, speak up and be a voice in this generation?
If we have compassion for the unborn children who don’t have a say in whether they’re allowed to live and experience this world for
themselves, are we doing anything about it?
Stand up, speak out, and love recklessly.
That’s what compassion would do.
Are guns good or evil?
Is gun control a good idea?
Should law enforcement be the only ones allowed to possess guns?
Would that make the world a safer place?
The main event that got me thinking of this topic is the Aurora shooting, and the stance and reaction of the public. Theatres for example, will not allow guns in their facilities.
Here is the problem with that thinking…
The man who committed the shooting didn’t bring guns into the theatre with him. He had his weapons in his car out back, propped a back door open, and then brought them inside. If this rule had been in place that day, it would not have helped prevent the tragedy.
Its almost as if this no guns allowed rule is now victimizing the innocent, law abiding citizens, because now the only people who will have guns are the law-breaking criminals, leaving everyone defenseless.
I know a lot of good people who carry guns as self-defense, or protection for them and their families.
Imagine what the outcome of that day had been if someone in the audience was a good, law abiding, concealed weapons permit possessing citizen. They could have stopped the psychotic shooting.
The law enforcement did show up in record time that night, but not quick enough to stop the murder of many people.
I believe guns aren’t evil. It’s not the guns that commit mass murder, it’s the people using the guns. I’m pretty sure that if guns did not exist, people would figure out other ways to hurt and or kill each other.
Are people inherently good or evil?
Put people in a room by themselves with no rules or consequences, and what will the outcome be?
Two very opposite opinions exist on this topic.
One is that people are good, it’s just some people get messed up by their surroundings, or negative circumstances.
And then the opinion that people are just bad to the core, we are all sinners from birth, and need to be taught and formed into good people.
The shooter in the Aurora theatre, James Eagen Holmes, was a very intelligent young man who had what seemed a wonderful life. How did his circumstances shape him into a mass murderer? Or was he just a horrible person from the beginning, and couldn’t overcome the thoughts and desires that accumulated into a shooting?
Often times, the same people who proclaim that people are generally good, also say that guns should only be in the hands of law enforcement. Which means the only people who have guns are the cops, and those who want to break the law…not good.
If people are genuinely good somewhere deep inside, why would it be a problem for anyone and everyone to have guns?
Because that would be TERRIFYING!!! Not everyone knows how to use a gun, not everyone understands how guns work, and some people can’t even be trusted with a butter knife!
I do believe that we are full of sin and deception from the very start. But because of laws, law enforcement, consequences, and the life changing, empowering grace of God, people can change. I know my own heart, and I will be the first to say that, on my own, I am not a great person. If not for the mercy and grace of God in my life, I am a selfish, deceptive, horrible person.
Even kids support this perception, every kid’s first word is,” No.” You have to teach a kid how to share, but they automatically know how to bite, scream, throw fits, steal, and hurt others.
There are good people in the world, but its not because they were born that way. It’s usually because they were taught, corrected, challenged, punished, rewarded, and formed into someone with good character.
I personally know people with horrible past life mistakes and experiences, but because of the life-changing power of the gospel, they now live respectable, role-model, stand up citizen lives. It’s incredible to see what God can do with a life that is surrendered to Him.
In wrapping up…
A gun is just an object. Leave it on the table and it will do absolutely nothing. Pick it up and you now hold a very lethal weapon. There in lays the key, YOU hold it. What kind of person are you?
I once heard a story of a mother who wouldn’t tell her little boy to stop playing in the busy street.
She had a lot of reasons that sound familiar in todays society. She didn’t want to suppress his identity, she wanted to support his free will and she didn’t want to damage his ‘psyche’ by exerting the force needed to pull him away when he did not want to go… Etc. The consequence would be an early death.
I’m Just Gonna Say It…
Spanking is a good thing.
Now before you get all crazy about how many children are being abused daily, and how child abuse damages the child’s psyche, let me just say that I strongly believe there is a difference between child abuse and discipline.
Child abuse is anything done to the child in anger, frustration, or the desire to control by force. Discipline is a very needed, very beneficial lesson that is taught to a child to ensure success in life.
I was spanked when I was a child, and I am so grateful that my parents did so. When I was a kid I didn’t enjoy it at all, but as I matured I saw the value and benefit of discipline in my life.
I have observed families and friends and seen the effect of discipline and the lack of discipline. We all have to learn discipline sometime in our life, and if it’s not from a loving parent who wants the best for us, then it will come from the hard knocks of life, that has no concern for our well being.
The Bible says some pretty clear things about discipline, including this: Proverbs 13:34, “He who spares his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him promptly.” Why would you cause pain to show love? To protect them from further pain in the future.
I realized when I was being disciplined as a child, that if I would learn the lessons my parents were trying to teach me through discipline, then I would have a better life from it. If I can learn to obey my parents right away, and have a good attitude, and not hit my siblings and argue with them, then I can live life doing what my bosses tell me to do, keep a consistent positive attitude, and get along with most everybody I come in contact with. Those things lead to a successful life.
I am not a parent, and I don’t claim to have all the answers about children, but I was a child that was disciplined, and spanked. I want the world to know that it is effective, it is not damaging, and it is a very smart thing to do.
As long as it is done in love and with the motivation of teaching and developing good character, it is a wonderful God given tool.
Truth in love,
“How did I get into this?!” I keep asking myself that question. – I have always been a much better talker than writer… So hold on, everybody – here it goes!
I have never overly enjoyed writing, but every once in a while, a strange thing happens. A passion for truth wells up inside of me and comes spilling out in written word!
Truth is a wonderful thing. John 8:32 says, “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.”
It is something worth searching for, fighting for, and sharing with the world!
All of my life I have had a fiery obsession for truth and justice. It has been very important to me to know the rules, know the truth and ensure that justice is served. Affectionately known as “the cop” of my family, I’d call out the wrongdoings and injustices of my siblings, and get in the most ridiculous arguments. That is until God rocked my world with this lesson… God is love.
Jesus did not die for truth, He died for people. Love was the motivation.
I can be passionate about truth till I’m blue in the face, but if I don’t love people, I miss the point. Jesus said all of the law and the prophets can be fulfilled in these two things-Loving God, and loving people.
Ephesians 4:14-16 is probably my favorite passage in this season. In this passage it says, “Speaking the truth in love…” This sentence has become my purpose. I now have a conviction for truth, and a passion for people. My ultimate goal for pursuing truth is not to build my own vanity or to cram it down other’s throats - it is to see many people SET FREE by truth.
I’m excited to explore the Civic Arena with you. To learn about politics, talk about life, and explore truth together. It was out of God’s love that He gave us truth. Let’s seek it out.