Put Your Money Where Your Heart Is

Blessed are the merciful.
       —Matthew 5:7

Mercy has three elements:

  1. Conception—seeing the need.
  2. Compassion—being touched by the need.
  3. Consummation—meeting the need.

In Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan (Lk 10:30–35), the priest and the Levite both saw the need (conception), but neither was touched by the need (compassion) nor met the need (consummation).

The Samaritan “saw him” (conception), “took pity on him” (compassion), “bandaged his wounds . . . took him to an inn and took care of him” (consummation).

The ladies were discussing the grim prognosis for a little girl whose life depended on expensive medical treatment, and the plight of her parents who were unable to pay for it.

Pulling out her checkbook, one lady said, “Let’s help.”

Following her lead, others began writing checks, and before the coffee got cold, they had met the need.

Where action is absent, mercy is absent.

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