Every person you encounter today is packing pain. The smiling waitress taking your order. The person standing silently behind you in line. The helpful gas station attendant filling your tank. The grumpy clerk at the store. The tired medical provider charting your symptoms. Your cool or cranky co-worker. Your child. Your spouse. You.
Sometimes our suffering is self-inflicted, while other times life deals us undeserved, damaging blows. Whether pain is evident in the eyes, voices or bodies of those around us, or carefully concealed and temporarily contained within the deepest recesses of their souls, each person walks through life wounded in body, mind or spirit.
We have the incredible power to offer each human being God brings our way today either healing or harm. By our words, an understanding look in our eyes, a tender touch, a smile, a kind and unexpected gesture, and even through our silence as we open our ears for just a moment and listen to their heart, we can ease the suffering of another. Or we can increase their pain and sorrow with a critical word, a look of condemnation, an inconsiderate act or even by closing ourselves off and looking the other way.
Look around you. Ask God to give you his eyes to see the needs of those who pass your way and the courage to reach out. You may not, cannot, and perhaps, should not stop their pain, but you can lessen its sting simply by caring. While He alone will one day make all broken believers whole, today, you can be His hands and feet to heal the brokenhearted and bind up their wounds. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
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