“It really hurts me when I see people who are suffering. I want to use my business to help them but the problem is that I also have to draw boundaries so that I don’t bleed my business and family dry in the process.”

As I sat talking to my new friend, I started to ask Jesus how He sees the situation. This is what He revealed to me…

I’ve been reading a lot about human interaction lately. How beautiful it is that God created us to love each other, to support each other, to hear each other, to value each other and to look at each other through compassionate eyes.

The dictionary definition of compassion is: sympathetic pity and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others.
Compassion flows when our hearts are moved by the plight of another.

My new friend David and I were talking about the dilemma a lot of people in the business world face. The issue seems to be:

Compassion for people Drawing healthy business
on the one hand vs boundaries on the other

He was facing a real challenge. What does it look like to follow his compassionate heart to resource and help people, but also make sure that his business isn’t negatively affected?

As I sat listening to Him, I asked, “Lord, You made us compassionate, but You also want us to prosper – how do You see this situation?”

He replied that in our human thinking, being compassionate means that we give something away and thus we will lack because we gave. This causes us to be afraid of acting compassionately. It’s a lack of trust in God that He will provide what we need.

Our reaction to this is to take control and draw boundaries to lessen the fear while still allowing a measure of compassion to be shown. These can look like…
• I’m only going to give away a certain amount of money so that I can still pay all of my bills. That’s just good stewardship.
• Somebody hurt me so in order to preserve myself, I’m just going to cut off relationship instead of press in for healing.
• I’m going to join in the office banter about her so that she doesn’t get the promotion I’ve been working toward.

What if there is another way?

In the examples in the Bible where feeling compassion results in giving something, we are shown that our fear of being in lack when we give, isn’t God’s thinking at all.

Each time Jesus felt compassion; He wasn’t concerned about what He would lose, He was convinced of what He could do to help.

He felt compassion and He healed them (Mat 8:3, 14:14, 20:34)
He felt compassion and He fed them (Mat 15:32)
He felt compassion and He taught them (Mar 6:34)
He felt compassion and He set them free (Mat 8:16)
He felt compassion and He wept and then He raised the dead (John 11:1-44)

In God’s eyes, compassion does two things. It expresses His heart of love and enables His power to bring solutions to His children.

The equation no longer looks like:

Compassion for people Drawing healthy business
on the one hand vs boundaries on the other

It’s now: Compassion for people brings Heaven’s wisdom on how He wants to provide the solution, through you.

Compassion, from Heaven’s perspective

David was blown away. All the fear that had bound him up fell off like broken chains clanging to the floor.

He said, “I get it now. When I feel compassion I’m going to stop and ask God what His provision is for the situation. He will tell me what I get to do that will enable me to act compassionately as well as continue to run my business well.”

Questions to ponder:
– In the area of showing compassion, where has fear caused you to draw boundaries?
– What boundaries do you need to review and adjust from God’s perspective?
– When you feel compassion, take time to practice asking Holy Spirit to help you know how to act.

Lisa van den Berg hails from South Africa, via the UK, and has dedicated her over two-decade career to helping people achieve success. She has honed her skills in a variety of roles including systems implementation and management, coaching and mentoring, and customer care. She has worked for a wide range of firms from national IT consultancies to local not for profits, and across both business and church sectors.

Lisa is the Director of ‘Heaven in Business Online’ where she spends her time creating and sourcing transformative teaching and case studies on partnering with God at work, for the online Community. Lisa, and her husband Frans, live in Redding, CA.

For more practical stories of what life with Jesus can look like visit AWJToday.com