Monday, March 7, 2011

"Everyone Needs Compassion"

"Daddy, what were your five compassionate things you did today?"  I asked.  Dad was getting ready for bed, and I was sprawled out on his bed with a book.  I wasn't moving until I got an answer.

Dad: Helping people get on the elevator.
Katie: Did you really help people on the elevator today or are you making that up?
Dad: Actually, I helped THREE people onto the elevator today, so that's three things.
Katie: No, "Helping three people on the elevator" is one thing.  What are the other four?
Dad: Um... calling Grandma and Grandpa.  Calling Laura.  Um... Four... Kissing in public.
He walked over to Mom, gave her a hug and a kiss, and smirked at me.  Then he came over and gave me a kiss.
Dad: Five!  Now get off my bed.

I called him lame, but I did move.  He asked my five compassionate things for the day, and I gave an equally lame list.
Compassion: a deep awareness for others' hurting and acting upon those sympathies.
I'm pretty sure kissing doesn't count.

Compassion is risking your arm in an elevator door to ensure someone in a wheel chair has ample time to get on board.  Compassion is letting someone cut you in line because she has a screaming child who needs a nap.  Compassion is smiling at the waiter even when he brought you the wrong kind of wine.

Everyone needs compassion.  Did you hear me?  Everyone needs compassion.  Not just those you think are deserving of it.  Not just those who cross your path when you're in a good mood.  Everyone.

It's hard.  Very hard.  But let's work on it together.

So, friends, I ask you the same thing, what were your five compassionate things for today?  How did you show or receive compassion today?

<>< Katie

"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." Ephesians 4:32


StorytellERdoc said...


Posts that make linger on their point are clearly my favorite. As I was reading your post, I too was asking myself what five compassionate things I accomplished in a day. It's harder than one might think, although I can only hope that my kind acts are subconscious and thus why I can't list them all!

How are you? I hope this finds you and your family and friends well.

Anonymous said...

It took me a while to make being encouraging a part of who I am. Thanks for this. I will take "being compassionate" as my next challenge. I am sure that if I practise this long enough it can also become a habit - and one I'll be proud of.
Thanks :)