As the world is in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, daily we learn more and more about the struggles and misfortunes that many are faced with secondary to this pandemic. However, it is refreshing, and heartwarming, to hear of many people who have demonstrated compassion, kindness and generosity toward individuals adversely impacted by this health concern. In the era we live in, where people may tend to be self-absorbed and not necessarily in tune to the needs of others, I do wonder what motivates people to demonstrate these acts of kindness.
Insight into why we are seeing this compassion demonstrated by others may be secondary to their faith and spiritual foundation. As we turn to the Bible, we find many scriptural passages which encourage and compel us to be kind and helpful to others. John 15:12 provides guidance from Jesus Christ regarding what we should demonstrate towards others: “This is My command, that you love one another.”
There are many ways that we can demonstrate love toward others: a phone call offering hope and support, a bag of groceries for a family in need, a thoughtful card with words of encouragement, helping to resolve a need that someone may have, a hug, prayers, holding someone’s hand, or some other unexpected act of kindness.
We have heard the phrase “the Golden Rule,” which has a Biblical foundation. Matthew 7:12 provides guidance as stated by Jesus Christ: “So in everything, do to others as you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” From my perspective, I would not do something kind for someone else expecting something in return: I would do something kind for another person because there is a need; we should demonstrate love, and this is what Jesus told us we should do.
A last thought is this: In the Bible, the book of John chapter 21, Jesus is talking with Peter. In summary, Jesus tells Peter: If you love me, take care of my sheep and feed my lambs and my sheep. As we head forward in these troubling times, may we do so with these Biblical passages in our hearts and our minds which will help us to demonstrate love and compassion toward others.
As you head forward, how can you take care of and feed God’s lambs and sheep?
James Reasor is a volunteer chaplain with Ballad Health.