Daily Reflections

A Compassion That Sees

September 9, 2021 Aylín Merck

You have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful. —James 5:11

Matthew 9:36 says that Christ “saw the crowds.” The word “seeing” in the original language doesn’t refer only to looking at something distractedly or absently but to observe with focus and attention.

Jesus saw the anguished and dejected hearts of the crowd. He saw the urgency in their desire to have their needs met—both physical and spiritual. He was willing to slow down, to focus on the person in front of Him. Sometimes when we interact with difficult people, we only see how they are an obstacle to us. The life of Christ in us lets us see beyond ourselves.

Discernment enables us to recognize that suffering is often the root of sinful behavior and unhealthy patterns. When someone is difficult to deal with, the compassion of Christ can help us ask: What suffering is behind that behavior? It allows us to see the humanity, limits, and sins of others without resentment. It empowers us to demonstrate to everyone—the suffering and sinner alike—the gentleness and humility of Christ.

Make it Personal

Ask God to help you see any difficult people you encounter through the viewpoint of the compassion of Christ.