“REED” This




A few days ago, we needed some lightbulbs for the sanctuary, so I walked across the street to the hardware store. As I was returning, I succumbed to the temptation to drop into the convenient store and treat myself to a chocolate covered Payday bar. I know I didn’t need it, but they are really good, and I was getting my exercise by walking across the street. Anyway, as I was waiting to purchase said candy bar, there was a man in front of me purchasing something. I noticed that the young lady that was working there was crying. She seemed to put her hand up to hide behind as she took his money for his purchase and gave him his change. I was already asking the Lord what He wanted me to do. After this man in front of me left, I would be the only one in the store with her. I was thinking it may be an opportunity to minister to her in some way. The man in front of me left and as I approached the counter, she continued to hide her face from me with her hand. I started to ask her if there was something I could help her with when I realized she was talking to someone through an ear device. She never said anything to me and would not make eye contact with me throughout the transaction, but I did overhear her saying she was not able to do something because she didn’t have a key. Another person came into the store, and I felt led go ahead and leave because she had quickly turned away from me after giving me my change. As I left the store and was walking back to the church, my heart hurt for this young lady who evidently was quite upset about something in her life. I prayed for her asking God to help her as I had no idea what she needed, but I knew that He did.


This particular day I had a lot of things on my mind that was bumming me out in a way. Some things and some people that had disappointed me along with some struggles in finding direction in planning had caused me to be a little down. As I encountered this young lady and thought about her afterward, I realized my problems are not that bad. Yes, they are important, and I need God’s help in dealing with it all, but they are not life threatening as this lady’s seemed to be. To be honest, she looked a little malnourished and her clothes were a little worn. From the way she was talking and acting, I wouldn’t be surprised if she was having trouble with a place to live or how to get her next meal. I may be jumping to the extreme, but I don’t know, it just seemed to be dire. I was ready to help if I could, but I wasn’t given the opportunity.


There are hurting people everywhere. If we will look, they are right in front of us. Are we seeing people through God’s eyes? Are we seeing the hurt and are we ready and willing to help? We may not be able to help in every situation, but we need to have compassion for people and be ready to be used by God if the Spirit so leads. When Jesus walked on this earth, He had compassion. “When He [Jesus] saw the crowds, He had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” (Matthew 9:36 NLT) And He showed that compassion. “Jesus saw the huge crowd as He stepped from the boat, and He had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So He began teaching them many things.” (Mark 6:34 NLT) And He had compassion not only for the crowds, but for individuals as well, as seen when He came upon a widow whose only son had died. “When the Lord saw her, His heart overflowed with compassion. ‘Don’t cry!’ He said.” (Luke 7:13 NLT) Then He raised her son back to life. If we will be mindful of the Spirit within us, we can show that same compassion for those who are lost and those who are hurting, and we can be Jesus to them.


Who is hurting around you? Are you looking upon them with compassion and through the eyes of the Lord? Pray and ask God how you can show compassion to someone who needs His love.


Bro. Paul Reed


Tuesday, May 10, 2022