He stands on the street corner outside Union Station although it would be more accurate to say he stoops.  In his body, he carries the burden for all to see, his back severely bent from illness and injury, or could it just be the weight of a cruel and uncaring world?   He asks if I can light his cigarette and spare a little change.  How much does it really cost to show him a little LOVE?

She comes to talk to me again.  The government is out to get her.  They are keeping her away from her son who she hasn’t seen in many years.  Today is a good day; she’s less agitated than usual.  I remember my mother has the same condition and could just as easily be lost among the sea of mentally ill homeless.  Of course I have places to go, I’m a busy man, but could I spare moment to listen PATIENTly?

A man rushes by, late to work again.  His boss is ready to fire him so he doesn’t notice he’s about to barrel into me at breakneck speed.   I dust myself off and pick up my bag.  He hasn’t actually hurt anything and he offered a brief but genuine apology.  Would it hurt me to offer a KIND word in return?

Jim at work just got a raise.  Can I congratulate him for a job well done and NOT stew in my own ENVY?

When I find out that Jim is still making much less money than I am and didn’t score as well as I did on his last certification, can I encourage him and NOT BOAST about how much better I think I am?

Can I manage my team humbly as true a leader, helping each of them to become the very best they can be and NOT as a dictator motivated by PROUD ambition?

Although, I am find myself surrounded by people with different agendas, different beliefs who rail against me.  Our Father calls us out to be in the world but not of the world.  Can I get my point across in pure speech and NOT VULGAR slang and wicked words?

Can I walk in this world as a Christian, as a patriot, as the defender of my family without using my responsibilities as a excuse for gathering up more than my share?  Can I act treat others in a way that is fair and NOT SELF-SEEKING.

Can I find a way to forgive, a way to forbear?  Can I change my worldview so that I am NOT so QUICK TO ANGER?  Can I measure the gifts that a person has brought into my life and NOT instead KEEP A TALLY OF WRONGS?

Can I deny my flesh, my wicked sinful nature?  How do I discipline myself and NOT act as others who DELIGHT IN EVIL.

I REJOICE IN THE TRUTH my Lord, that though I cannot do any of these things in my own strength, my HOPE is in you.  I BELIEVE that you will lead me in right ways and pick me up when I stumble.  In that faith I will PERSEVERE until the very end when my love is perfected in your presence.

Grant me FAITH to carry on.  Remind me daily of the HOPE I have in your eternal kingdom.  But above all help me to LOVE with unending compassion as you have first done for me.

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