Union with God
Genuinely compassionate action for enemies, even those who harm us, grows as we imagine ourselves sharing in Jesus’s experience of offering compassion even as he suffered. We experience what Jesus experiences. The Christian spiritual traditions describe this as becoming the image of Christ or entering into union with God. Although many people have thought of “union with God” as disengaging from life in the world, Christian compassion practices show the opposite: The deeper the union with God, the more deeply we engage life in the world, offering compassion even to those we experience as enemies. Through that compassion, enemies become reconciled, “in peace” with one another.
—Andrew Dreitcer, Living Compassion: Loving Like Jesus (Upper Room Books, 2017)
When has God’s compassion enabled you to be reconciled with someone?
"All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us."
—2 Corinthians 5:18-19 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
Lord, make me an instrument of your compassion.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room or share it in the comment section.
Reverend Junius B. Dotson was preaching at a funeral when suddenly he realized he wasn’t going to make it through the service. The next thing he knew, he was in an ambulance on the way to the ER, where he was diagnosed with extreme exhaustion. Read more about his Soul Reset.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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