What Is the Cost of Being Compassionate, Courteous, and Kind?
Squabbling and Nasty Talk
As of late, there has been a lot of persecution for Believers. Persecution in the way of rumors and gossips, lies and maliciousness. People attacking people with their words and murdering one another’s character (Matthew 5:21-22).
When my children start squabbling with one another and want to call each other nasty names or hitting on one another, I question them, “Do you think Yeshua would call someone a name? Do you think Yeshua would hit another human being?”
They, of course, answer, “No.”
So, I continue, “In fact, Yeshua did the opposite. He did not intentionally put Himself into danger; but, when people called Him ‘Blasphemer!’, He stood still. And, when the people called for His crucifixion, He lay willingly on that old, rugged, wooden cross. Why do you think that is?”
The children say, “Because He loved us that much.”
And, I tell the children, “Because He loved us that much. If you think He loved us that much, then don’t you suppose we should follow His example and love each other that much?”
One of the children will sarcastically say, “But, I won’t die for __________.” (Insert another child’s name.)
And I want to launch into a day-long discourse on the virtues of forgiveness, grace, and mercy, instead, I say, “And, that’s your choice; but, what’s not your choice is calling each other names or being nasty to one another. If Yeshua would not do that, it’s because Abba would not do it, and Yeshua, like us, reflects Abba’s image. We strive to live as Abba lives … holy. We edify each other, we lift each other up. And, we certainly don’t call those who bear the image of Abba nasty names. We all bear the image of Abba.”
1 Peter 3:8-9
1 Peter 3:8-9 says, “Finally, be all like-minded, compassionate, love as brothers, tenderhearted, courteous, not rendering evil for evil, or insult for insult; but instead blessing; knowing that to this were you called, that you may inherit a blessing.”
The Amplified Bible shows 1 Peter 3:8-9 in this way, “Finally, all [of you] should be of one and the same mind (united in spirit), sympathizing [with one another], loving [each other] as brethren [of one household], compassionate and courteous (tenderhearted and humble). Never return evil for evil or insult for insult (scolding, tongue-lashing, berating), but on the contrary blessing [praying for their welfare, happiness, and protection, and truly pitying and loving them]. For know that to this you have been called, that you may yourselves inherit a blessing [from God--that you may obtain a blessing as heirs, bringing welfare and happiness and protection].”
Being Compassionate, Courteous, and Kind
This can be a difficult venture for anyone, especially in the time and age we live in. People have become more interested in tripping others up along the racetrack instead of helping others up when they trip, stumble, and fall. It has become a “Me! Me! Me!” society, instead of a “We! We! We!” society. Everyone wants to win on their own, taking the credit for self-independence and self-sufficiency.
If the cashier at Walmart is scanning our items too slowly for us, but she is being courteous and trying to have a conversation with us while she works, we snap at her and tell her we have other things to do and don’t have time to chat. If we were to look at her face, we might detect a single tear escaping the corner of her eye, making its way slowly down her cheek. She wipes it away as quickly as she can lest she be found weak. She speeds up to get us on our way, relieved to have such a rude person be done in her line.
Driving in our cars, we honk our horns when the driver in front of us does not take his turn to go through the intersection. We make rude finger gestures, and stick our heads out the window to scream at the other driver. We lay on our horns without relent. We don’t know that perhaps there is something going on in the car in front of us, and when he finally goes through the intersection, we follow him, speeding around him, all the while still laying on our horns.
What would happen if we were to be polite to the woman scanning our groceries? Do we think we would be thought of as losers because we dared to show compassion or extend a hand of patience for a fellow human being adding some joy in her day?
What would happen if we stopped long enough because of a car in front of us does not proceed, and we got out of our cars to check on him, making sure there is nothing wrong in his vehicle? What would happen if we showed compassion or extended a hand of patience?
What is the cost of being compassionate, courteous, and kind?
What is the cost of being united in spirit, for showing sympathy, for showing love to one another, for being compassionate or courteous, and for blessing one another? What is the cost
Baruch Atah Adonai Eloheinu, Melech ha-olam, she’asani betzalmo. Amein.
Blessed are You O LORD our G_d, King of all the world, Who created me in His image. Amen.