Read | Romans 15:1-2
Awareness. If you’re not sensitive to the struggles of those around you, how can you help them? Every Sunday you sit in church surrounded by people who hurt intensely. The Lord knows the depth of their suffering and is there to release them from bondage, but He often works through His children. Thankfully, we have His Spirit to sensitize us to needs in our midst.
Acceptance. We are not to bear burdens on the basis of how we feel about the other person. Jesus doesn’t discriminate about whom to love or help. If we want to be like Christ, we must be willing to share in the pain of others, no matter who they are. Does this describe you? Or do you limit your support to family and friends?
Availability. Christians sometimes relegate the work of caring for others to their pastor, figuring, That’s his job, after all. Yet he, too, has burdens. Your pastor wants to help everybody in every way possible, but if he’s the only one available to offer support for the church, both will crumble. A faith community thrives when people bear each other’s budens. Ask yourself if there’s a way you can help carry the load in your church.
Scripture tells us the whole law is fulfilled in one commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Gal. 5:14). Next to loving the Lord with all your heart, this is the second greatest command (Matt. 22:39). Therefore, when we share another person’s heartache and burdens, we fulfill a great law of God.
Dr. Charles Stanley