Who Cares?

“Who cares?” You may have heard these words uttered, maybe even by yourself, at one time or another in your life. And, of course, in a lot of cases, one true and correct answer, and maybe even always the best answer, is: “God does.” And if we are imitating Him and doing as He does (Matthew 5:48; Ephesians 5:1-2; 1 Peter 2:21; Philippians 2:3-4) and feeling as He feels, another true and correct answer would be, “And I do, too.”

There is such a thing as “compassion fatigue”. But Jesus never suffered from it. Jesus never encountered a person about whose plight or problem He didn’t care, even those who made themselves His enemies. And He told us to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. (Matthew 5:44) Throughout the Gospels, we are told that Jesus regularly prayed for and ministered to every last person who came to Him with a need in a particular place or village, even when He and His disciples really needed to rest and “take a break” from the constant demands of ministry and the very real toll that it took on His and their physical bodies, and probably also on their minds and emotions.

There are a lot of things and situations and issues and people to “care” about in our modern day and age, as well. And yet God doesn’t want or expect us to walk around encumbered and overburdened by a load of care. In fact, the Apostle Peter tells us to keep continually “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7 NKJV). I have heard the appropriate action here described as both “body-slamming” our cares upon God and “dropping” them, like a burden far too heavy for us to carry (because that’s what it really is), at His feet.

And yet, to free ourselves of the undue burden of cares and worries does not mean that we ever should become apathetic, or lose our compassion for others. The Apostle Paul described “...what comes upon me daily: my deep concern for all the churches” (2 Corinthians 11:28 NKJV). If we are to follow Jesus as our perfect model, we will see the need in others around us and respond out of “agape” (selfless) love to seek to meet or address that need, or to ask God to do so if we cannot do so directly in action ourselves. But we will also be able to release to God, through a lifestyle of intercessory prayer (i.e., praying on behalf of others) the burden of that need that would weigh too heavily upon us if we were to try to carry it ourselves. We do not serve an apathetic God, so neither should  we walk in apathy; and neither do we serve a joyless God, so neither should we walk in worry or continuous sorrow. Holy Spirit-led intercession and works of compassion, and spending time alone with God in prayer, worship,  and the Word, and also in fellowship around corporate prayer, worship, and the Word, are the keys that will always help us to strike a happy balance and find a place of spiritual equilibrium so that we can continually be refreshed and ready to be used of God to accomplish His will on the earth and in the lives of the people whom He loves and cares for so deeply that He sent His only, beloved Son to die for them so that they might live eternally with Him in joy.

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