Be quick to show compassion Print
Saturday, 30 June 2018 13:51




IF we really want to be “another Christ,” we should be quick to show compassion to others who are in need of one thing or another. Christ himself showed this in that moving episode narrated in Mk 5,21-43.

While he was preaching, a synagogue official approached him begging for help for her very sick and dying daughter. And he went with him. And while on the way, a woman afflicted with haemorrhages for twelve years, moved by faith, touched his cloak hoping for a cure.

And she was cured. When he reached the official’s house, the daughter already died. And he brought her back to life again.

This is typical of Christ. Wherever he went, though he had to convey difficult and hard-to-understand messages to the people, since these messages were mainly spiritual and supernatural in character, he never neglected their more immediate human needs.

His heart always flowed with compassion, quick to notice the needs of others and to respond to them. And all this in all simplicity, telling the beneficiaries who were so bursting with gratitude that they wanted to broadcast what they received to the whole world, to keep quiet instead.

It’s an example that we should all try to imitate. One deep desire we should have is that of making as some kind of default  mode that attitude of thinking always of the others, wishing them well all the time and doing whatever we can to help.

It’s obviously not easy to do, but we can always try. With God’s grace and with our persistent effort, we can little by little and day by day hack it, such that it becomes second nature to us to think and feel for the others. That’s what compassion is all about.

Compassion starts in the heart, in our thoughts and desires. In this level, there is no limit in what we can do.

Obviously, when we try to translate these prayers, thoughts and desires into action and material things, we can be greatly limited.

But insofar as prayers and sacrifices are involved, the possibilities are unlimited.

We need to examine ourselves more deeply to see if indeed we are always thinking, praying and wishing others well. We have to be wary of our tendency to let our thoughts and desired be dictated only by self-interest, usually done in a most subtle but effective way. For this, we have to do regular examination of conscience.

And while we have to be like Christ in showing ready compassion to all, let’s not forget that we too need to go to him to ask for some miracles, like those many helpless characters in the gospel who approached him for a cure. In other words, we cannot rely anymore on our human powers and resources to handle our many predicaments. We too have to beg for miracles.

And so let us go to Christ like the blind man Bartimaeus (Mk 10,46-52), the woman with the flow of blood (Mk 5,25), the 10 lepers (Lk 17,11-19), the man born blind (Jn 9,1-12), the man possessed by a legion of devils (Mk 5,1-10), and many others. Let’s go to him without delay, without hesitation.

We can also help others go to Christ if they themselves cannot do it, like what the father of a possessed boy did (Mk 9,17-24), those who brought a paralytic to Christ (Mk 2,4), the centurion who asked Jesus to heal his servant (Lk 7,1-10), etc. We can do a lot of good to others if we do this.

What is important is that we approach Christ with deep faith. Let us humble ourselves so that that faith can grow and show itself in deeds, like intense prayers and sacrifice. Remember what Christ told his disciples why they could not cure an epileptic boy. It was because of their little faith. (Mt 17,20)