Do you have hard or hurt feelings toward someone? Thinking about these things is not easy, but holding on to such feelings can be destructive in your life and robs you of the peace God desires for you to have. Are you ready to answer the compassion challenge?
Settle Yourself and Release
Take a few deep, slow breaths. Notice your breathing. Listen to the sounds around you. Notice any tension in your body. As you notice your tension, honor it and acknowledge it. Then, release it to the Lord as you take cleansing breaths.
Encounter: Feast on God’s Presence
First read this passage aloud. Then, as you read it again, consider what God may be saying to you regarding any struggles you have with another person.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
(Ephesians 6:12-18 NIV)
Close your eyes and picture the person with whom you are struggling. Where do you see Jesus in your relationship with that person? Allow Him to show you how He sees that person. Do you desire a heart of compassion for that person? Is there some invitation he offers here? How will you respond?
Take time to record what you have discovered in a journal.