Sharing Compassions for the Ride

How do those “compassions” manifest themselves to us? In my last post, I wrote about God providing an endless supply of compassions.

“We were not completely wiped out.
        His compassion is never limited.
23 It is new every morning.
    His faithfulness is great.”
(Lam.3:22-23, God’s Word Version)

God’s compassions extend to us in many forms

In May, Scott, Seth and I traveled to Mayo Clinic.  This four day trip revealed not only medical answers but a reminder that God’s mercies are “new” every morning.  I always read that verse as meaning that there is an unending supply of God’s mercies.  While that is true, another truth emerges to me: God’s compassions are revealed in a multitude of forms.  New forms.  Forms that I didn’t expect.  In this case-mercy was granted to our family through the body of Christ.  Prayers, meals, groceries, listening ears, financial support, and care for Lena and Eli during our week in Minnesota.The burden to seek out Mayo Clinic was simply a thought in October.  When answers seemed to elude us, taking him to Mayo surfaced in my mind. However, lurking in my mind were the practical questions: How would we afford it? Our medical debt was piling up by the week.  Who would watch our other two kids?  For a whole week?   What about…….?  Yet, as it turned out, the finances came together and a group of amazing friends-some who didn’t know each other- merged into a second family for Lena and Eli. I still marvel at how God’s compassions came to us in that week. 

In April, Scott’s beloved grandmother passed away from a brief battle with cancer.  She was 97 years old. Yet, we were stunned.  I know that sounds surprising but……Granny lived independently, she drove, birthday and holiday meals were still made with love by her. And…..she still drove weekly to deliver Meals on Wheels to the elderly.  In fact, she was nominated by Meals on Wheels as national volunteer of the year in 2012!  Everyone who knew her, experienced a taste of Heaven. Providing meals, celebrating birthdays, sacrificing time, sharing her home with  family and friends of family in need of refuge,  and living in such a way as to provide financially for her family after her death- God’s compassions extended through her.

 

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As I found out at her funeral,  her desire to show God’s mercy to others came from the examples of her own parents.  One story, in particular, struck me.  As a child, growing up in Delaware, she lived next door to a small boy born with Downs Syndrome.  As we all know, people have difficulty accepting those that are different.  Combine that truth with a lesser knowledge of how to care for children born with anamolies and the result usually involved sending the child “away” from society.  However, Granny’s parents consciously communicated to her that all of us were created by God and share in His likeness.  Therefore, it was expected that she would treat this boy with the same respect as any other human being.  The same was expected in regards to race.  For individuals considered outcasts in society, Granny’s kindness toward them was countercultural.  To those touched by her, God’s compassions were extended. 

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In a poignant letter written by her son-in-law, he summed it up well: “she always greeted us with hugs and kisses, done with an enthusiasm which left no doubt we were home….and loved….  She made love real.” Her ability to extend God’s compassions to others overflowed out of the supply of compassions God had extended to her.

How do you make love real to others? How do the compassions of God physically work their way out of your supply and into the lives of those who you encounter?

 

 

 

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