Compassion for today
As many of you know, I have been praying for peace in the Congo. I’m not sure how it happened ,but Jesus washed me in compassion for them. I think of the Congolese women who suffer daily just trying to gather sticks to make fires to cook their family food. They are raped on the way to the market place where they hope to find bread and fruit for their families. They are outcast after they are raped because they are termed “unclean” and their husbands no longer want them. Just existing becomes an uphill battle for them. I have concern for them in my heart. So, I painted this painting that depicts them forgotten. I will give this painting to the church’s silent auction to gain more funds for peacemakers in the Congo.
I know that peacemaking is a way of showing compassion. We hurt so much for someone that we try to help him or her find peace. Peace comes in different forms and levels. For example, as a child my mother was abusive verbally and sometimes physically to me. After she lost her temper, she couldn’t say, “ I’m sorry.” She just didn’t know how, but she would make my favorite pie or cake and give to me. Sometimes she would take me shopping and buy me something. It was her way of making peace with me. She didn’t have the tools she needed. Anger control was not taught or monitored in the forties, fifties, or sixties. I feared her as a child; yet, I can remember feeling so sad for her after such a rage. I wanted her to be happy again. I felt compassion even though I was unsure why.
I think that is how God builds compassion within us. The scripture says He crowns us with compassion and He has compassion on us. I feel His presence and know that He imparts His compassion into me at funerals, tragic accidents, with troubled teens, or when my family is suffering. I remember clearly walking into the cancer center with my husband, Denny, last year. As I looked at the room full of cancer patients, young and old, my heart ached for them. I didn’t know their whole story, but I felt great empathy toward them. My heart crumbled when Denny was diagnosed, but through God’s compassion and strength, he came through this battle miraculously. Compassion is a dynamic in life that is sometimes forgotten.
Just like the Congolese women I painted on this clothesline. They are real women, with personal stories, ambitions, and hope, but they need compassion. They need active compassion. They need our prayers of intervention for peace. They need tools for peacemaking. That is why I am walking the race September 28th, so I can add to the funding to reach out to these women. Thank you friends, who have given to the funds for Congo out of compassion. Jesus is Lord of all and compassionate for His children. Let us follow His example.