Caring Deeply is not something we talk about much. Doing more is our comfort zone, but caring deeply is invasive and in our culture today, we are not comfortable with anything that affects our personal space. Caring deeply requires us to get beyond the confines of our self. We care, don’t get me wrong. But deeply?
Caring deeply requires having the mental and heart margin to think outside of our daily responsibilities, and stop and linger long enough to care about what someone else is going through. And, though we can not care deeply, like this, for everyone…it is important that we do care deeply for some. This type of care, this heart of the gospel, is part of our spiritual formation as we grow up in Christ.
“But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker, fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs. For he longs for all of you and is distressed because you heard he was ill. Indeed he was ill, and almost died. But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, to spare me sorrow upon sorrow. Therefore I am all the more eager to send him, that you may be glad and I may have less anxiety. Welcome him in the Lord, with great joy, and honor men like him, because he almost died for the work of Christ, risking his life to make up for the help you could not give me.”
Why mention Epaphroditus here? It is touching to see that Epaphroditus was not so much concerned about his own illness, as he was concerned about others concern and worry for him and his illness. He was very others focused and centered, and cared deeply, having a longing for their good and betterment in Christ.
What about us? Do we long for the good for others? Do we care more for them then for our selves? Do we realize the beauty of God as we see the beauty in another’s life? Or are we too negative, self-absorbed, or insecure to note and enjoy the beauty?
Teach us what it means to care deeply. Move in our heart strings that our lives might play your music. Open our ears where they are deaf and mute our mouths when they are critical. Help us Lord, to care deeply and to care from a sincere place of your Agape Love.
Living Up Today, how about you?
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