Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Be the Exception

homeless, sleeping on the bench
Author Biography

    Jessica serves as the Well and Clean Water coordinator for CBN's Operation Blessing. She's been with CBN for 7 years. She and her husband live in Virginia Beach where she collects shells and sea glass on her early morning walks along the beach.

Related Topics
Jessica Teed - Well & Clean Water Coordinator – OB Headquarters

“Why are you being nice to me?” he asked. His words were heartbreaking and echoed within me.

I handed him a warm blanket and could think of nothing else but to reply, “Is there some reason I shouldn’t be nice to you?”

He looked at me, shrugged his shoulders, and said, “No one else is.” Sizing me up, he added, “You’re not like them.”

In today’s culture, kindness and compassion tend to be the exception, instead of the rule. Sometimes people are surprised when a stranger extends kindness to them. Have you experienced this? Can you think of a time a stranger was kind to you? What was your reaction to their kindness?

While it is human nature to be self-centered, the Bible tells us that we must be selfless and love not only our neighbors, but our enemies, just as Jesus did. (See Matthew 22:37-39, Matthew 5:43-47, Philippians 2:3-4)

In Luke 10, an expert of religious law asks Jesus, “Who is my neighbor?”

Jesus shares the parable of the Good Samaritan as a response to this question. (See Luke 10:30-37) In the parable, a Jewish man is attacked and left for dead. Both a priest and a temple assistant see the Jewish man in need but make the decision not to help him. The person who stops to help the man in need is a Samaritan, someone who was marginalized and looked down upon, especially by the leaders of religious law. The Samaritan chose to overlook differences and treat the Jewish man with compassion and mercy.

“Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?” Jesus asked. The man replied, “The one who showed him mercy.” Then Jesus said, “Yes, now go and do the same.” (Luke 10:36-37 NLT)

Jesus made it clear to love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and one of the ways we do this is to love the people God places in our path, whether we know them personally or not. Treating other people with mercy and kindness flows from a heart that has been truly changed by the love of Christ and His sacrifice on the cross. The Bible is clear, we will be held accountable for how we have treated other people. (See Matthew 25:34-46)

When we open our eyes and our hearts to those around us without exceptions, we have a real opportunity to not only be a light in the darkness but to also be the hands and feet of Jesus to those who need Him the most.

Who can you be compassionate and merciful toward today?

Lord, open my eyes and my heart to the people You place in my path who need hope and need to know who You are. Help me to show them the same love, compassion, and mercy that You would. Help me to be Your hands and feet and to bring the truth and light of the Gospel where it is needed. In Jesus’ name, amen.


Scripture is quoted from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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