How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I bear pain in my soul,
and have sorrow in my heart all day long?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?
Consider and answer me, O Lord my God!
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep the sleep of death,
and my enemy will say, “I have prevailed”;
my foes will rejoice because I am shaken.
But I trusted in your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to Lord,
because he has dealt bountifully with me.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Colossians 3:12 says, "Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience."
I love that verse. This week, I found myself thinking of it as a literal idea. What would it be like to actually clothe myself in compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience? What would it feel like? If compassion were a fabric, I bet it would feel like the softest, warmest cashmere. Then I wondered what it would feel like to clothe myself in self-compassion.
There are times when I forget to be compassionate toward myself. I become demanding and short with myself. What if, in those moments, I were to take out a self-compassion blanket and soothe myself? I could talk gently and kindly to myself. I could say, "You are a holy and dearly loved child of God. You have worth and value. You are important to God and to the people around you."
When I take time to be compassionate and kind to myself, I am more able to be compassionate and kind to others. This is something we can focus on in our prayers this week.
You call us holy and dearly loved. Help us to start the day clothed in compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Keep us rooted in compassion and kindness for ourselves and others.
- Ashly Cooley, Counseling & Support Ministries
If you find yourself struggling to be compassionate to yourself, call and schedule an appointment with a pastor or make an appointment with a counselor. There are books and information online about self-compassion. There is also an event on Saturday, October 5, at Resurrection Downtown that will focus on self-compassion talk. Here is a link.