Building On Compassion
In an article called “The Importance of Compassion,” author Emmaline Soken-Huberty says, “Compassion is what you get when you combine empathy with action. Compassion drives people to do something about another person’s situation. It motivates them to help others, especially the most vulnerable in society, without expecting a reward.”
In the BACC, we are committed to building on compassion. This means when we see a situation where vulnerable people are hurting, we are motivated to take any possible action to meet those needs. This is the core of who God is and how Jesus lived, and it is how we are determined to build God’s church.
So imitate God and be truly compassionate, the way your Father is.
– Luke 6:36 Voice
The global impact of building on compassion
In recent years, we have seen God move in powerful ways not only in our local communities but also around the globe when we let ourselves be motivated by compassion.
The Ukraine Relief Fund
One great need that has arisen in the world in the past year is the Ukrainian humanitarian crisis. As over 1 million people became refugees in just a few short weeks, we were moved as a church to find a way to help. Through the Doing Good Fund and the overwhelming generosity of the members of the BACC, we were able to provide immediate financial assistance to Christians in Eastern Europe.
We reached out and partnered with Christian Ray Flores, who has been a church builder in both Russia and the Ukraine and is currently a leader in the Austin Church of Christ. He founded the Ukraine Relief Network, an on-the-ground effort to deliver aid to those who were not able to leave Ukraine. We also connected and worked with Val Koha, an elder in the Boston Church of Christ and the president of the European Missions Society, to both provide immediate relief and to develop a long-term plan to maintain support for those in our family of churches in Eastern Europe.
Support for Covid-related job losses in the Phillipines
Building on compassion has also led us to support our spiritual family in the Philippines this year. Christine, a member of our church in Silicon Valley, heard from her mother who was in the Philippines that many in her church had lost jobs and were struggling financially due to the impact of Covid-19 on their community. We reached out to the Mindoro/Metro Calapan Christian Church and provided 13 disciples and their families who had lost jobs with living expenses for a period of three months.
Additionally, you may remember the story of Grace from Alameda County whose mother became a Christian and then moved to her hometown of Tarlac in the Philippines. She started a Bible Talk there that just kept growing. The mature women and disciples in Alameda were able to raise money to purchase chairs, supplies, and other resources to help that growing church.
Connections with the church in Panama
Nicole, a member of the church in Silicon Valley, had been sharing resources like BACC live stream services and Deep Spirituality devotionals with Christians in Panama through her family connections. As they watched the live stream services, the women in the church in Panama heard about Girls’ Night Out and they expressed that they wanted to be a part of it. Nicole teamed up with other Spanish speakers to meet virtually with the women in the Panama church and their friends to celebrate, listen to the message, and share their lives.
These amazing examples show us that building on compassion not only meets the needs of people but also connects and builds relationships that would otherwise never have been possible.
Why it matters to build on compassion
The last two-and-a-half years of the pandemic have been difficult for all of us. It is easy to shut out the rest of the world and only focus on our own problems and challenges, but building on compassion makes us look outside of ourselves for ways we can help others in the world who are hurting.
We have found that having compassion and building an others-centric church is what makes us all rely more on God and therefore become stronger as a church.
“When we focus on others, our world expands. Our own problems drift to the periphery of the mind and so seem smaller, and we increase our capacity for connection – or compassionate action.”
– Daniel Goleman, Social Intelligence: The Revolutionary New Science of Human Relationships
Jesus teaches us that showing compassion and generosity to others, both individually and collectively, makes our hearts pure and will ultimately make us the most happy.
If you free your heart of greed, showing compassion and true generosity to the poor, you have more than clean hands; you will be clean within.
– Luke 11:41 TPT
Builders in the Bible: Timothy
Timothy is one of the people in the Bible I have found to be inspiring and someone who exemplifies what it means to build on compassion. He was one of the most significant leaders and builders of churches in the Bible. As Paul describes, Timothy’s impact came from his heart of deep concern and compassion.
There is no one like Timothy. What sets him apart from others is his deep concern for you and your spiritual journey. This is rare, my friends, for most people only care about themselves, not about what is dear to the heart of Jesus the Anointed.
– Philippians 2:20-21 Voice
For more on Timothy, check out the following passages of the Bible:
- 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy
- Acts 16:1-5, 1 Corinthians 4:14-17, Philippians 2:20-21
I look forward to growing more and more in my compassion and am excited to be a part of such a great fellowship that builds on compassion.