Blessed… Compassion

Jesus traveled among all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, announcing the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and every sickness. Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he had compassion for them because they were troubled and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The size of the harvest is bigger than you can imagine, but there are few workers. Therefore, plead with the Lord of the harvest to send out workers for his harvest” (Matthew 9:35-38, Common English Bible).

As I am writing this, I am a bit melancholy. Today (Saturday, March 18, 2017) my favorite all-time guitar player, Chuck Berry, passed away. I don’t want to say I am totally heart-broken or anything like that. I only knew the man through his music. I had never met him in person. As I work, I am listening to a compilation of Berry’s greatest hits.

When I read this passage I had something a bit different enter my mind. Perhaps it was because of Chuck Berry’s passing. I remember as a kid about so many rock stars, Elvis, The Beatles, The Beach Boys, Chuck Berry and so many more played before large crowds. Crowds followed them. When they would reach a concert site people would flock to the arena in hopes of getting a glimpse, or an autograph or an handshake. Crowds of fans would come hoping for something, hoping beyond hope that they might get something because they were present, even if they didn’t really know what they wanted.

As I picture events like today’s lesson, the events play out in my head with even bigger crowds for Jesus than some of these rock stars drew in their day. Jesus was the “rock star” of his day. And, as Jesus looked out on the crowds, he was filled with compassion for them. The lesson says that Jesus was filled with compassion for them because they were troubled and helpless. He hung out with these folks. He preached to them. He taught them. He healed them. The crowds might not have heard music but they saw quite a show. Miracles were very present with Jesus.

Jesus finished this lesson and the chapter with the famous line, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. When I read that in the context of the lesson I can’t help but think even Jesus was feeling pretty overwhelmed about that time with all there was to do. The Scriptures remind us that Jesus grew weary at times. The idea that here there was more to do than could be imagined isn’t beyond the realm of possibility.

I think the same could hold true for us today. With the number of people outside the Church of Jesus Christ, the harvest is still plentiful and the workers grow fewer and fewer all the time. Perhaps the reason, all too often we lack compassion. Compassion is most evident when we are in the world showing the love of Jesus Christ. When we can have compassion on the crowds around us, it is then that we are most like Jesus.

What are you doing to show compassion to the masses?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy, Peace and Thanksgiving,
Keith

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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