realign devotional day 5

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COMPASSION

Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.   Galatians 6:2


Becoming World

Often I have said to people, “I will pray for you,” but how often did I really enter into the full reality of what that means? I now see how indeed I can enter deeply into the other and pray to God from his center. When I really bring my friends and the many I pray for into my innermost being and feel their pains, their struggles, their cries in my own soul, then I leave myself, so to speak, and become them, then I have compassion. Compassion lies at the heart of our prayers for our follow human beings. When I pray for the world, I become the world,; when I pray for the endless needs of the millions, my soul expands and wants to embrace them all and bring them into the presence of God.

But in the midst of that experience I realize that compassion is not mine, but God’s gift to me. I cannot embrace the world, but God can. I cannot pray, but God can pray in me. When God became as we are, that is, when God allowed all of us to enter into his intimate life, it became possible for us to share in his infinite compassion.

In praying for others, I lose myself and become the other, only to be found by the divine love which holds the whole of humanity in a compassionate embrace.

– Genesee Diary (123)-  Henri Nouwen

Lord Jesus, I thank you for inviting the little children to come to You. Teach me to love like You do.
Holy Spirit, I ask that You would show me how to pray for others with selflessness, endurance, and love.  

God Almighty, make me not content with lukewarm love.  Gift me with Your unfailing and relentless compassion for others.  

Amen.

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