It’s one thing to invest in people who have never hurt us. It is another thing to be moved with compassion toward people who have wronged us.
Consider this biblical story. “Now there were four leprous men at the entrance of the gate; and they said to one another, ‘Why are we sitting here until we die? If we say, “We will enter the city,” the famine is in the city, and we shall die there. And if we sit here, we die also. Now therefore, come, let us surrender to the army of the Syrians…’” The lepers came into the Syrian camp and found that God had put all the soldiers to flight. They started to enjoy food and drink that had been left. “Then they said to one another, ‘We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news, and we remain silent. If we wait until morning light, some punishment will come upon us. Now therefore, come, let us go and tell the king’s household.’” (2 Kings 7:3-9, ESV).
In the case of the four lepers, think about how tempting it would have been for them to neglect, and thus get vengeance on, a city that had subjected them to incredible pain and rejection. Perhaps today you find a similar sentiment deep within your heart. You thought a measure of kindness would be extended to you, but you instead found yourself being pushed to the side as everyone else passes you by.
As a Christian in this last hour, you are going to discover incredible provision from heaven. You must be careful, however, lest the thought enter your heart, This is for me and me alone. I am going to eat my morsel by myself, here in my little corner of security. When this all blows over, I am going to emerge as the one whom God provided for. Who cares about my neighbors? What have they ever done for me?
Thankfully that was not the reaction of the four lepers. These men were moved with compassion, and consequently they exemplified the heart of Christ. As we see in their situation, this will often require that we walk in forgiveness. We must be willing to go back into a city that has caused us pain, willing to go back to neighbors or coworkers who were unkind to us.