“The value of compassion cannot be over-emphasized. Anyone can criticize. It takes a true believer to be compassionate. No greater burden can be borne by an individual than to know no one cares or understands.”
The word compassion comes from the Latin word compatior which means “to bear with” or “to suffer with.” To “have compassion” is not a matter of feeling sorry for someone, but rather having an internal desire to join another person in their suffering. Being compassionate is a matter of seeking to alleviate another person’s pain by putting part or all of the burden that they are carrying on ourselves. In other words, there is no such thing as having compassion on someone without action.
Over my Easter holiday I had some time to read the easter story and to remember how much compassion God had on us. Jesus didn’t have to take on our burden, but because He did His cross is now our purest example of compassion in action. Jesus didn’t just feel sorry for mankind; He took our retribution onto Himself. And now the ministry of every Christian is to respond in the same way. Compassion is not a matter of simply being nice to the needy or even helping them. Compassion is about the sacrifice of ourselves to carry the load of others. Compassion is hard work. And it’s dirty work. You can’t just write a check and forget about it. To have compassion like Christ is going to hurt. Being compassionate is not a skill that you can learn either. Compassion is a gift from God. It is only by basking in the presence of God and remembering what He did for us that we are able to truly love others in this way.
Compassion is what Save The Storks hopes to offer to every woman we meet. Save The Storks is about providing the needs of an individual by personally sharing their heart ache. Entering into someone else’s life situation can be painful. That’s when we look to Jesus. He endured every pain imaginable, and He did that for us. It’s easy to help others by providing money and resources for them, but actually loving them requires us to set aside our natural tendency to judge. Instead, we must enter their world and feel and what they feel.
Mother Teresa once said, “If you judge people, you have no time to love them.” We agree. We want to rebrand being pro-life with a genuine emphasis on the mother, and that is why we identify so well with the idea of Saving Storks. We hope to be known for our willingness to go the extra mile for these mothers. When you really have compassion on someone you don’t find any time to waste on judging them; instead you seek every opportunity to love them and to carry their burden.
There are a lot of organizations that offer help to the needy, but one of the reasons why we bonded so well with the Downtown Pregnancy Center is because they emphatically seek to love every person that comes through their door. Their director Carolyn Cline has organized a team of people that move with compassion for others. For this and their professionalism they are raising the standard for pregnancy centers nationally. If you would like to see some examples of this, check out one of their quarterly newsletters. Pray for the Downtown Pregnancy Center and that our Stork counseling team would have an abundant desire to endure the suffering of those who board our little bus. We wouldn’t ask for your prayers if we didn’t think that we needed them.
He is Risen,
Our challenge to you today is turn your compassion into action. Not everyone can move to Dallas and take a shift on the Stork bus, nor are we ready to take volunteers at this time but here are some things you can do:
- Keep spreading the word – social media is critical to sharing our message. Forward our emails, post about us on Facebook, and keep Twitter buzzing with your thoughts about Save The Storks.
- Send us a note of encouragement – our Stork team is re-energized by your kind words.
- Pray for our continued efforts – we need prayer for ongoing work in Dallas. Please pray that God would multiply the ministry in this way.
- Keep dreaming – if you have a passion for pregnant mothers and the idea goes with our “Stork” philosophy we would love to hear it. Feel free to share your artwork with us.
- Volunteer locally – get involved with your local pregnancy center; they would love to have you support them.
- Become a financial partner – You can give directly to the Downtown Pregnancy Center via their website at InvolvedForLife.com. We would love for you to experience the joys with us in this very rewarding ministry.