Lenten Devotional: Saturday, March 23

Psalm 75Psalm 76Psalm 23Psalm 27Jeremiah 5:20-31
Romans 3:19-31
John 7:1-13

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Psalm 23:5

Compassion. Of all the words in our English language, compassion is one of the most essential, not just the word, but the concept. Understanding the concept of compassion forces one to think on a large scale. Yes, we experience compassion for ill or grieving or deprived people; that’s a normal and predictable response. But I’m thinking of Jesus’ miracles; his actions were compassion writ large, divinely inspired.

What place does compassion hold in our daily lives? I’m referring to the degree of compassion that requires deep understanding, based on much thought and prayer, a search into the depths of acts or situations that seem impenetrable, impossible, unforgivable. The answers are always there, maybe even shrouded in mystery, one opaque layer after another.

Too often we wrestle with terrible anguish over hurts and disappointments, frantically searching for answers, so we may be at peace with ourselves and others. Recognizing circumstances, motivation, or lack of understanding is not enough to reach a plateau of quietude and rest, but compassion can provide such healing.