Have you ever been denied something that you really want, and what would be your typical reaction when that happens? This past Saturday, as we were on our way to go soul winning, we stopped to get some breakfast at Wendy’s. We both ordered the Breakfast Baconator meal but I requested to replace the regular buns with the croissant buns. The cashier must have had a bad morning because she was short, curt, and borderline rude to us. However, she said that they would be able to replace the buns for me. A long story short, I did not get my Baconator.
Because we already drove away and was on our way to church, I was not happy. My husband got his Baconator, whereas I got a breakfast sausage and eggs croissant. “Where is my Baconator?!! This is ridiculous!” were my thoughts. I was half tempted to ask my husband to turn around so I can go back and complain about the bad service. I was fuming the whole way because I did not get what I ordered. My husband, then reminded me that the cashier might be going through a hard time, and for me to have compassion. What a thought, because Jesus had compassion on people. He chose to be merciful, even with those who were guilty, and were undeserving of His forgiveness. Oh my, how I was convicted!
Some of you reading this might be thinking how ridiculous I was, and I agree that I was guilty. Often in life, we can be either so caught up trying to get our way, or be so busy doing our own thing, that we forget there are hurting people all around us. If we would just stop and look around us, we would probably find someone who needs our help, or who are in need of some words of encouragement. Jesus was attentive to the people around Him. He stopped frequently to show compassion, to heal, comfort, and encourage those who are hurting.
When asked what was the great commandment in the law, Jesus responded with “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets” (Matthew 22:36-40).
Because of the high standards of living in America, most people are generally very busy throughout the day. However, the Lord Jesus never said that we ought to love our neighbors only if we have time. He commanded us to make the effort to show love to our neighbors, regardless of how busy we are. Who are our neighbors? It can be anyone the Lord places in our path: our co-workers, family, the next door neighbors, or even a cashier who is having a bad day and needs love and compassion from us.
There are so many hurting people all around us. Will you be willing to allow the Lord Jesus to shine His love through you to a lost and dying world. A world who desperately needs to hear the good news of the Gospel? Will you share with them the hope and encouragement that they can find in Christ?