The definition of COMPASSION is, “sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it” or “a feeling of wanting to help someone who is sick, hungry, in trouble, etc.” To be compassionate is to have or show compassion.

Think about that in light of the character of God. We talk about how He is omniscient; He knows all, all the time. He knows when we’re in distress and He cares about that. Because He loves us, He wants to alleviate our distress.

David said in Psalms‬ ‭86:15, “But you, O Lord, are a God of compassion and mercy, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness.”‬

God is the God of unfailing sympathetic consciousness of our distress with a desire to alleviate it. He always cares about us, always notices our distress, always wants to alleviate those distresses.

Well, why doesn’t He just make it all go away, then?

Remember the Garden of Eden? There was no distress. No stress. No angst. No anxiety. No depression. No problems. And yet, the people chose to ditch God to be in control, to become gods themselves. That didn’t just set the course for the rest of us, it was a harbinger of what we would be like simply because we’re human. We want to be the boss of us, and THAT puts us in the worst distress of all.

That decision to remain in control of our lives sets us up for all sorts of troubles and secures our eternity absent of God. When life on earth ends, those who refuse to surrender their will to God’s will, will be completely without Him. No one around with the Spirit of God in them, nothing that looks like, sounds like, or acts like the Almighty. Absent of God. Forever.

God understood this when He shut the gates to Eden behind the first couple and set up a guard to keep them and the rest of humanity out. He saw the distress that enveloped them and eventually us. And so, because He is compassionate, He made a way for us to alleviate that permanent, eternal distress and sent His Son Jesus to die as the sacrifice necessary to effect our freedom from the deep clutches of that distress.

The decision to avail ourselves of that relief is all ours.

God knows the sickness that remaining unsurrendered brings. It begins in the core of our being and emanates in various ways to behaviors. He knows, and He wants to alleviate that sickness with all His heart. So He offers Himself as the ultimate sacrifice to achieve our healing and waits patiently for us to accept His compassion.

Knowing God is compassionate doesn’t mean we who are believers get a free pass to live like we want. Surrender to God is giving up our will to control our lives to Him. Knowing He is compassionate, however, is a comfort. We can know that regardless how big or how small our distress, He cares and He is longing to reduce the effects of that in our lives. All we have to do is reach out to Him in full surrender, trusting that His ways are the best for us.

Coffee, Bible, Journal.

Faye Bryant

Faye Bryant is an author, coach, and speaker who helps individuals escape the lies of the enemy, live into God’s truth, and build a better life by first feeling, dealing, and healing their way through a stuck future or an abused past, toward a deeper path of purpose, and into the unhackable life of their chosen legacy. Hers is a story of resurrection: from death to life!