This verse has always stunned me.
“And the king will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me.”
Our world feels as if compassion is missing right now, doesn’t it? But the truth is those who are compassionate aren’t usually clamoring or clanging on social media. They are quietly loving. Quietly showing up. Quietly supporting. Serving. Encouraging. So there’s a lot of compassion taking place. We just don’t always see it.
Compassion is powerful. According to scripture, when we love the least of these, Jesus feels every bit of it.
A few years ago I sensed God asking me to gather other women to stand shoulder to shoulder — and then to find women who were in the trenches, ministering, loving, sacrificing, and wrap around them. That launched the first TogetHER project, which allowed us to come alongside a ministry that offered literacy to women who had no other access to it. We hoped to sponsor 50 women, but you helped sponsor 180 women in India to receive a year of literacy education, complete with teachers and curriculum! You showed up!
In other TogetHER projects, you helped raised funds for newly-placed refugee women and children. You helped purchase a large piece of equipment to help trafficked women work with dignity. You purchased items for pregnant women who longed to keep their unborn child, but who had little support. You blessed a family who was serving the homeless, but had little themselves due to unexpected medical expenses.
In 2020, the pandemic hit and so did breast cancer for the 2nd time. I set the TogetHER projects aside. I wasn’t sure when or if we’d get to do this again, but recently I sensed God saying, “It’s time. Suzie, you are healed and well. Let’s go!”
So, this part of TogetHER Ministries is coming back to life, and it feels right. For compassion is a light in a fractured world. Compassion points to Jesus. Compassion is tangible love. Compassion leaves a mark, one that is healing rather than a wound.
If you’ve longed to make a difference, these are ways we can all show up:
Choose compassion over cynicism
I know the world is messy right now. The truth is it has always been messy. But when we choose compassion in this messy world, it’s life giving. For us. For others. It’s intentional. I have to be honest. Cynicism is tempting, but it’s not transforming, so it doesn’t get to take root in me.
We have no idea what someone else’s life is like. We don’t know what led them to that hard place. A word of kindness can feel like manna when you are overwhelmed and hurting. Choose kindness.
I know this feels counterintuitive, because we feel it has to be big to make a difference. The truth is when we all do the small (a meal, a card, a word, a genuine prayer, a smile, a donation), it adds up. Together it is huge. It’s not just counterintuitive, it’s counter cultural. Don’t forget that God showed up the greatest in the small. In a stable. Splashing across the sky to a meager group of shepherds. To 12 ordinary men. And the small became eternal. When small acts of compassion become a regular part of who we are, God shows up.
There are thousands of women in the trenches, coming alongside others who have no voice, showing up, sacrificing, encouraging, working hard to love tangibly. That can be a ministry or a nonprofit or someone within your church or community. Join in. Donate. Send a card of encouragement. Pray for one organization that God places on your heart. Volunteer a few hours a month. Together we can love tangibly, and this is the part that blows me away – “I tell you the truth, when you do it to the least of these, you were doing it to me.”
If you want to know more about the TogetHER projects, I share more info below. I treasure you. I’m grateful that you are quietly loving, quietly encouraging, quietly changing the world. I love that about you.
Just for you
I want to offer a few resources for you. First is the TogetHER community where we stand shoulder to shoulder with each other as we grow in our faith together.
- We will launch 3 TogetHER projects in 2023 through TogetHER Ministries. If you want to know more, or be a part, you can join the TogetHER FB Community (where we grow and encourage each other) or check out a few of our past projects on my website.
- Listen to Prayer Starters podcast, a daily prayer encouragement for you. It’s 3-minutes long and it begins your day by walking with Jesus.
- Join Holley, Jennifer, and I around the table in the More Than Small Talk podcast. We go a little deeper on topics that we all long to talk about.