Compassion

12:07:00 PM

As I've mentioned, I go up to Coatesville, PA on Thursday afternoons to help with an afterschool club for the inner city youth. We bus them about ten minutes from the city to a place called The Camp at Old Mill,  started by a couple named Jack and Sue Crans and their family. Anyway, this ministry has been going on since before my time, but I seriously love this camp, this family and the other volunteers, and these kids. Anyway, I help with the jr high girls, but Mr. Jack teaches them. I've decided I get more out of these teaching than the girls do because seriously I am so blessed to sit under the teaching of this man of God who has given his whole life to serve God by serving the people of Coatesville.

Anyway, Mr. Jack recently took a trip to Angola Prison (really called Louisiana State Penitentiary) where, I think the statistic is that %85 of the men in there are there for life. What a sad, dark place that could be! But by the grace of God, a work has begun there and these men are presented the gospel of Jesus Christ. And also, these men have been given opportunities to serve the Lord and serve people through programs like Malachi Dad's and the hospice ministry (video below).

Mr. Jack met some of the men there, toured the entire facility, and came back to share with us and the girls about Compassion. Well go ahead and rip my heart out, Mr. Jack. First Mr. Jack asked us what compassion meant and the girls through out words like "feeling" and "love." And Mr. Jack shared with us the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37) . He reminded us that feeling love for people wasn't enough- but it was putting that love into action that would make it compassion.  Than he showed us a video on the hospice ministry of Angola Prison.  Anyway, the inmates minister to the other inmates who are dying- changing their diapers, feeding them, washing them, sitting by their side while they take their last breath, and sharing the hope of the gospel.
What a picture. I can change my grandmom's diaper, no problem- but the diaper of a convicted murderer?  What an act of compassion! What an act of love! Anyway, I was challenged- I can say I love people- I can say I love the people of Philadelphia, I can say I love my church, I can say I love my family- but if I see a need, and am able to do something to satisfy that need and do nothing- than how is that showing the compassion, the love of Jesus Christ my Lord??? Convicting, challenging, and hopefully life changing...how I long to have Jesus' compassion for people. Jesus saw needs and did something about it. Jesus was surrounded by hoards of smelling dirty people who followed Him around all the time, and He loved them, spoke God's words to them, healed and ministered to them- even when He was tired and busy! Oh to be like Jesus...


On a totally random note- remember when I mentioned Dr. William Allan Dean's book The Names of God? Anyway, guess who signed the charter when The Camp at Old Mill was started????? Yes, W. A. Dean! woah, small world, eh?

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