When you look at other people, what do you see? When you read the news of tragedy and disaster, what do you feel?
Compassion is at the core of Jesus’ character. And as believers, he has called us to model this same virtue in our own lives. One way we can develop compassion is by sympathizing with others. But we can’t feel compassion for others until we know how others feel.
So, over the next few weeks, we’re going to look at different groups of people and we’re going to spend time thinking about the lives they lead, the difficulties they face, and the troubles they have to overcome.
Then, we’re going to pray for them. That’s the only application of this reading plan. We’re going to read some Scripture, think about others, and pray for them. And our hope is that compassion would grow within our own hearts as we focus our time and energy outside of ourselves and on the people we interact with every day.
Today, think about your neighbors and the people in your community. What are the struggles they face? What are the joys they share? And what do you want to see God do in their lives?
If you’re not exactly sure what to pray, here’s a place to start...
Jesus, when I think of all the people living in our apartment communities, I feel much the same way you did about the multitudes of your day. There are so many people and so many needs. Many of them are struggling, like sheep without a shepherd. Grant me your compassion and love, God. Soften my heart to the challenges they face. Please give me a willing spirit to serve and pray for them. May these residents come to know you, the living God, and may their lives be transformed by Christ. Amen.