Take a few minutes to read the Bible verses listed and ask the Holy Spirit to lead you in how this verse applies to you this week.
“Love others as much as you love yourself.” (CEV)
Think of all the feelings you feel in a day. You might feel happy when your mom makes your favorite breakfast. You might feel frustrated when you’re struggling to solve a tricky math problem. You might feel nervous to sing in a choir concert. Have you ever stopped to think about what others may be feeling? When we empathize, we learn to understand and enter into the feelings of others. Empathy can help us love our neighbors in the way that Jesus wants us to.
Jesus knew three siblings named Lazarus, Mary, and Martha. They were friends of Jesus and loved God. Lazarus had been very sick, and he died. Mary went to Jesus, and she kneeled down at his feet. She was very upset. After all, Jesus had healed so many people in the past. Why didn’t he come to heal her brother before it was too late? She told Jesus, “If you had been here, my brother would not have died.” Jesus saw Mary crying, and he cried. In fact, he was so incredibly sad, he wept. But he knew that God would be glorified when he raised Lazarus from the dead, and he did just that.
Jesus’ healing of Lazarus was a miracle, but this story is also amazing because it shows us how Jesus’ emotions were just as human as ours. Jesus saw that Martha and Mary were sad, and he felt deep sadness with them. He understood their hearts and their needs. Through crying with his friends and sharing in their sadness, Jesus set an example for us by showing empathy towards others. And by entering into the feelings of our friends, listening to them, and caring for them, we can follow Jesus and show his love.