Meghan Vogel, a junior runner at a high school in West Liberty, Ohio, had just won the 1600-meter title at the girls state meet. But it’s what she did in her next race that is most remarkable. With about 20 meters to go in the 3200-meter race, Arden McMath, a sophomore from another school who Meghan had never even met, collapsed in front of her. Rather than run by the competitor, Meghan helped her to her feet and carried her across the finish line. And, Meghan made sure she kept Arden ahead of her. That was a remarkable act! That was a compassionate act.
Compassion is a sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it. Meghan was a compassionate person. She saw another runner in distress and she not only had the desire to alleviate it…she acted.
When the Lord saw her, his heart overflowed with compassion. “Don’t cry!” he said. Luke 7
In this incident a funeral procession was leaving a village as Jesus approached. A widow’s only son had died. When Jesus saw her, he felt immense compassion for her. “Don’t cry!” he told her. Then Jesus acted; he did what he could do. He walked over to the coffin and touched it. “Young man,” he said, “get up.” The dead boy sat up and began to talk! Jesus gave him back to his mother. Jesus felt compassion…then he acted.
What do you think of compassion like that? Not only would Jesus be that compassionate toward you, but he could show you how to be that compassionate toward others. Maybe you can’t raise people from the dead, but maybe you could help someone over the finish line.