This is what the Lord Almighty said: “Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another” Zechariah 7.9
If we are passionate about loving others, we will be people of compassion. Compassion isn’t a word we use a huge amount, perhaps because it is often seen as a word that denotes ‘weakness’ - a kind of soppy sympathy. But compassion, in Christian tradition and the other great spiritual traditions of the world, is anything but weakness.
Compassion is not pity, it doesn’t mean looking at the needy or the poor and feeling sorry for them. Compassion is not being ‘nice’. Compassion is not being sentimental.
Compassion is love made real - hard edged, powerful love: love that sees the blemishes in others, love with eyes wide open, that nonetheless seeks the best for others. Compassion is kindness, another much maligned word but one which means a generosity of spirit and action that puts care into action. We read in the Gospel accounts that Jesus looked upon people ‘with compassion’ and acted on that compassion. Compassion is not passive, it involves doing something for the benefit of those for whom we feel that compassion. For people of faith, passionate compassion is a difficult calling, action to stand with the disadvantaged and struggling not just in word but in deed.