Follow by Email

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Compassion

 "Chinese Girl"  by Stu Mendelson.  Pen and ink, watercolor wash. 


"Let us not underestimate how hard it is to be compassionate. Compassion is hard because it requires the inner disposition to go with others to place where they are weak, vulnerable, lonely, and broken. But this is not our spontaneous response to suffering. What we desire most is to do away with suffering by fleeing from it or finding a quick cure for it.” - Henri J.M. Nouwen

Henri Noewen is one of my go-to writers.   His own life, towards the end, was dedicated to  disabled people who were so profoundly retarded that, really, there was no way to "get" anything out of them. 

When I saw this quote posted this morning on facebook, my heart leaped......and sunk.  This exactly describes my current condition.  The inner war exists-----yes, I want very much to flee from Stu, or find a quick cure.  And I sometimes fear that my decision to re-admit him was a kind of running.  

But, as I examine it, it is really a slowing down, an admission that his pace is going to be much slower than I had hoped, that my own need to re-charge is profound,  that my less frequent visits are still visits.  I am not running away.  I am slowing my pace to match his.  

On Sunday, a young woman shared about her work with an organization called Bring Me Hope.  It's an outreach to orphans in China http://www.bringmehope.org/about..  I wish I had a transcript of her whole presentation, it was so compelling.  But the observation that hit the closest to home was when she put into words the heart of true ministry.  She said "It's really a story of two broken people, the counselor and the orphan, who in drawing together glorify God."   The compassion is not just for the one who appears to be needy!   We are all needy!  That helps me to breathe, to receive the love God offers, to pray that in that opening of my heart, he will plant yet more love, so that his compassion can flow ever more freely. 

 "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God"  2 Cor. 3-5

I like the name of that organization......Bring Me Hope.  Really, it's what all of us need! 
Praying for compassion to be circulating among us----because that's who Jesus really is!

4 comments:

  1. Sue: Very profound. I can only guess what you're going through, and I admire you.

    Love, Schvester

    ReplyDelete
  2. I know that young lady. :)
    I need to share this post with a friend of mine.
    Love you,Sue!
    MaryO

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sue, I don't think you are running away. Slowing down is not only matching Stu's pace it is matching God's pace. Like a five-year-old on a two hundred mile journey who says after five miles, "Are we there yet?" we mostly try to get where we are going too fast. The destination is just a place, the trip is the journey.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That helps, Chuck. It's hard to watch Stu buck his own reality and turn to me for relief. The only hope for both of us is for me to fix my eyes on Jesus, and let the devil take the hindmost. And pray that Stu's eyes are opened. Gonna keep walking slowly and let God tell the story His way:-)

      Delete