July 20, 2017

Isaiah 53:5 (NLT) — 5 But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.

I remember last year or was it the year before, time sometimes gets away from me, the Garborg family in town had to bury their 18 year old son David. He was in his first year of school at Baylor University in Texas. One day he was riding bicycle with his girlfriend and he was hit by a car and killed. It was a very tragic accident and the family was plunged into instant shock and grief. Most of Fergus Falls was moved with sympathy and compassion. Our hearts went out to the family. Many people sent cards, flowers and gifts. There were many hugs and tears. A bike ride was organized in honor of David. The local paper interviewed the parents. And many prayers went up on their behalf.

Sympathy is a mark of Christian maturity according to the Apostle Peter. See 1Peter 3:8. It is pretty easy to have sympathy for those you know and love. It is also easy to have sympathy for a family you don’t know when they lose a child or some illness or other tragedy befalls them. But the real mark of mature sympathy occurs when you can have it for someone who has wronged you, or in the case of the Garborg family, for the individual that killed their son.

This is where our memory verse comes into play. Two verses before this verse in verse 3 it says this > We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care. And in spite of this Jesus’ heart went out to us. You see this is the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus. We turn away and he comes after us! We don’t care about him and yet he cares for us. Wow! We do sin and do stupid things and his heart bleeds for us.

Our world needs more of Jesus’ sympathy. Peter said >

1 Peter 3:8 (NLT) — 8 Finally, all of you should be of one mind. Sympathize with each other. Love each other as brothers and sisters. Be tenderhearted, and keep a humble attitude.

When Peter said, all of you, I guess that us. Let’s ask the Holy Spirit to fill us with the sympathy of Jesus and then ask him for opportunities to show it. Like Jesus let us be moved towards people, whoever they are, and not away.

Be Inspired Hilltop!




  1. Mary Anne Frank says

    If I recall they never found the person that hit and killed David. What a terrible guilt to live with. I never thought about grieving for that person but I do now. I can’t imagine living with that kind of guilt. I will pray for him/her wherever he/she is today.

    • Daniel Mueller says

      He or she may be in heaven one day because you had sympathy. Sympathy is a great weapon against Satan!