Compassion Builds Hope
Compassion is more beautiful than anything aesthetically pleasing. It’s a trait that moves beyond vanity, judging, and selfishness. It’s like a sparkling clean glass in the midst of dirty, gnat swarming dishes.
There are times when we may have to move ourselves to compassion through self-awareness and a strong push in becoming more mindful of our surroundings. Sometimes, a lack of compassion is coupled with a lack of understanding and even selfishness. When we are afraid of contaminating our own little world, we block out anything that might destroy our view. We do just enough to keep us from feelings of guilt. We give a teaspoon when a gallon is needed.
Judgment is another compassion blocker.
We assume the worst and thereby justify our actions for not helping. Justification is easy – we can always find someone to agree with our decisions. Often the ones who are the most compassionate have experienced similar conflict.
Experience yields understanding.
We should stop priding ourselves for our accomplishments and humble ourselves to compassion. It’s a difficult world and oftentimes it’s not a matter of someone working hard enough – sometimes, it’s just life’s circumstances and a lack of aid or opportunity. If you’re successful (whatever that means to you), I’m sure you can narrow down some, if not a lot of your success to a favorable condition.
Stop reducing people to their circumstances.
Maybe we haven’t experienced enough hardship to be moved to compassion, or we’ve managed to forget our past struggles. Perhaps we don’t understand. But, we can do something anyway. It’s not a one-size-fits-all world, where every person in need doesn’t try hard enough or they have an entitlement mentality. Sometimes, they just need kindness to help them through hardship. And, maybe one day, they will have the means to bless others ten-fold what they received. Imagine a trickle effect that spreads throughout families, neighborhoods, communities, and the world.
Friends and family members can sometimes turn their backs or ignore a loved one in need, even withdrawing emotional support and resorting to gossip and judgment. Of course, it’s not always intentional. But, how often does someone say, “I’m worried about you?” or “I’m praying for you,” but do little or nothing to help – even when it’s within their power to do so.
Don’t look down on someone, unless you’re helping them up.
Let’s face it, we aren’t always in a position to help, emotionally or financially. However, if you are in a position to help, then do it. Though we aren’t usually the cause of someone’s hardship, if we turn a blind eye and aren’t willing to help, then we are a stumbling block and we contribute to prolonged suffering. We should do our best to be more watchful and not ignore the pain that surrounds us every day. There might come a time when we are in need and will long for the refreshing spring of compassion.
“Judge tenderly, if you must. There is usually a side you have not heard, a story you know nothing about, and a battle waged that you are not having to fight.”