Christianity 201

February 2, 2014

True Compassion Comes Judgement-Free

Sometimes in our zeal to be right about issues, we can offer what is genuine heartfelt compassion but it has moralism attached to it. When Jesus encountered situations where he could have preached, he first loved unconditionally.  Consider this article by Deb Wolf at the blog, Counting My Blessings, titled “I’m So Sorry. I Care. I’m Praying.

The other day I did something I rarely do . . . and it wasn’t long before I realized I should have considered the place before sharing my thoughts.

I was on FB and saw this headline – Marlise Munoz removed from life support; baby ‘executed by judicial tyranny,’ pro-lifers say – LifeSiteNews. You can read the article and following comments here.

I have been very upset about this story since it surfaced weeks ago. While reading the article my emotions took over and before thinking as carefully as I might have . . . I left the following comment:

This case has made me so sad, and I don’t feel any of us has a right to judge. I believe life is God-given, all life. But we must stop attacking this poor family. We have not walked in their shoes. This is a time to extend grace and love.

Those of you who know me, know I am pro-life. I believe that every baby is a blessing, and I am against abortion (but that is not my point here).

What is my point?

To a grieving family this is the time to say, “I’m so sorry. I care. I’m praying.”

That’s it!

I didn’t always feel this way. I must confess that I’ve voiced more than my share of judgmental comments in the past. Something I deeply regret and that I’ve repented. I am especially sad that it took being on the receiving end of judgment for me to change.

I wish I’d always honored Jesus’ words:

“You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate. Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven.” Luke 6:36-37

“If another follower sins, warn him, and if he is sorry and stops sinning, forgive him.” Luke 17:31

Be compassionate, don’t judge, don’t condemn, and warn him (personally).

I’ve come to believe it’s important to live by the saying…

“Hate the sin. Love the sinner.” 

And “the sinner” includes every one of us. You and me.

Speak the truth. Tell people about the value of life, all life. Talk about God’s command to live with sexual purity. Explain God’s truths about coveting, gossiping, and stealing. Carefully respect the use of His name, and show people what it means to love Him with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.

Through thick and thin, keep your hearts at attention, in adoration before Christ, your Master. Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy. 1 Peter 3:15 (MSG)

“Always with the utmost courtesy,” other translations say with, “gentleness and respect, humility, reverence, meekness, and fear.”

Is it possible that too much of society has become comfortable with . . . Hating the sinner, and excusing the sin. At least the sins they commit. We don’t like the word sin anymore, but sin is everything that separates us from God.

God hates sin, but He loves sinners. So much so, that He provided a Savior for us. And it is that Savior who told us not to judge others. It is that Savior who told us to show compassion, who told us to forgive, and who told us to “go and sin no more.”

Will you join me today in telling the Munoz family, “I’m so sorry. I care. I’m praying for you.”

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