Empathy is a word that has been on my mind lately. I think it is something our society, country and world need and should exhibit right now.
I’m scared by politicians who think they can make a country great and who use their power to build themselves and their “foundations” more wealth. I’m scared by politicians who don’t put regular, working-class people into positions of advisor and counselor and say they represent the regular, working-class people. How can they have empathy for the mainstream when the only time they visit with them is a 30 minute stop at a diner during campaign season?
I’m scared by Christians who show a heightened interest in politics and brush off the beggar with “they need to get a job” comments. I’m scared by “right-wing evangelicals” who have a very different message of truth and love than Jesus displayed. I’m scared by “fundamentalists” who drive nice cars and live in big houses and sit in million dollar churches and don’t know a poor person, a person of color, a person who is psychologically wounded.
I’m scared of a world where we think that looking good means we are doing good. I’m scared of a world that makes someone who has suffered physical/emotional/spiritual abuse be quiet about it and “push through it” instead of letting them be vulnerable, broken, and grieving. I’m scared of a world where facades are more acceptable than truth and where toughing-it-out is more acceptable than crying a river of tears over pain.
These things scare me because I have been that person in all those examples. I played the game until life drug me over rocks and briars and I was bruised, bloodied and ready to die. It was then I experienced empathy and unconditional love from people I thought would turn away from me and despise me. It was then I really met Jesus and learned he saw me all along, knew my failings and still provided a door to heaven one day. It was then that I learned how to be empathetic to others and share the love I had been given in abundance.
Our world needs more empathy. If you have experienced it, if you understand it, if you are willing to dole it out to those who want it and those who don’t even know they need it yet, join me in giving freely what we have experienced freely. Let’s help the broken walk again. Let’s help the bruised smile again. Let’s help others set the burden of pain and brokenness and fear free from those things. Let’s start an #empathy tour of such magnitude the world finds peace again.
Grace and peace.