Seth Dahl

Pity will imitate compassion while simultaneously hiding it from us. Pity wants nothing more than for us to think we are acting with compassion, so we believe we are doing something good and godly, while in reality we are assisting evil. Knowing the difference is crucial, here’s a few ways to recognize that difference: Pity steals power (by doing for others what they can do themselves) while compassion imparts it. Pity will let others convince us they are helpless so we step in and rescue them, thereby strengthening the victim mindset in them. Compassion refuses to believe people are helpless and allows them opportunities to discover that. Pity leaves people in their problems while compassion pulls them out. Pity hides the truth to protect emotions, compassion tells the truth in a loving way. Pity seems nice but isn’t. Compassion sometimes appears mean but is truly kind. Don’t let pity hide the very thing it’s pretending to be.

John Reed

During Advent opportunities for works of charity abound calling out for Christians from every side: a sack of food for a needy family, money dropped in a Salvation Army kettle, a donation to a school, a toy for ‘Toys-for-Tots,’ etc. Unfortunately, these works of charity so easily can assuage the Christian conscience, while doing nothing to being about a solution to the root causes of the problem.