Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.

~Romans 12:15, NLT


When you don’t understand, you hold on to what you know.

~Nelson Walker

My sermon on Sunday morning was out of Mark 3, Jesus healing the man with the withered hand. Jesus was both angry and grieved by the indifference of the congregation. He placed a hurting man in front of them but they were unmoved; they did not care about his pain or suffering. They were focused on their own personal agenda. Jesus cares for hurting people. The man’s injury was not life threatening but it did make it impossible for him to do his work {he was a mason}. There is an old proverb that states: put a rat in front of a cat and you’ll find out if you have a cat. Put a hurting person in front of a Christian and you’ll find out if you have a Christian.

Rarely do hurting people need correction. Job is a good example: Job was hurting and rightfully so but his friends assumed he needed correction. What he needed was sympathy and understanding. You don’t correct a drowning man, you throw him a life preserver or dive in and get him. When a person is drowning, there are not in the mood for swimming lessons. Whatever you do: don’t feel the pressure to fix things because you can’t. What you can do, if you are not careful, is make things worse which is exactly what Job’s friends did. Forget your cliche’s and your favorite verses: it is not a time to preach or correct–just be there with genuine sympathy.

One other thing: resist the temptation to share your story. The last thing a hurting person needs to hear is a story about your pain. Be sensitive to their need.

Cool night and warm days. Don’t get too anxious with your plants; we will still have some frost but I do hope we have no more sub-30 weather. Enjoy the sunshine and have a great day.

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