Some say that it is instinctive. Some say that it needs to be learned. But either way, sharing is what brings the fabric of mankind together.
Recently, I got a facebook message from a classmate from high school. She shared that a classmate and her family were going through a tragic situation and urgently asked us to pray for this family. Even though I hadn't heard from these classmates for years, many of us did just that and prayed.
I knew I needed to write something to my old friend, but I deliberated and actually spent hours praying and then deciding what to share. I finally wrote it, sharing a personal story that I thought related. I just got a message from her today. She was so grateful for the message. It gave her comfort.
So why, oh why, oh why, I asked myself, did I feel the least bit hesitant to share? Giving and receiving are profoundly satisfying and healing.
How did I get over myself enough to share? When my sense of compassion overcame my sense of self.
Here some of those stop signs that I found would try to halt one's sharing of good words and works on the highway to meaning.
Watch out for thoughts like:
Oh, they won't remember me.
They won't understand my message.
They are probably too busy and don't have time to read this.
What if they are offended by what I write?
I am not articulate.
Someone has probably already shared this same idea.
(These are rather lame, aren't they?)
And here are some of the green lights that let our love and compassion overflow, offering a healing balm to whatever situation we see is calling for healing:
"Whenever the heart speaks, however simple the words, its language is always acceptable to those who have hearts." (1)
"Giving does not impoverish us in the service of our Maker, neither does withholding enrich us." (2)
"Give them a cup of cold water in Christ's name and never fear the consequences. (3)
"Love enriches the nature, enlarging, purifying and elevating it." (4)
"...Love is the fulfilling of the law." (5)
And finally, "(Happiness, Truth and Love) cannot exist alone, but require all mankind to share it." (6) So go ahead, and love your neighbor. Share a cup of cold water, a simple idea, a healing story. Gently ask if they would like you to pray for them. "Love never fails." (7) You simply can't go wrong. And the good you do just keeps blessing.
Kim C Korinek, CSB
banner photo (c) Micah Korinek; other photos by Gabe Korinek, Kim Korinek, Brad Crooks. Leslie Larsen (c) 2016