Loving Others with Empathy, Compassion, and Care in 2017


Jesus Without Baggage

A prominent part of Jesus’ message is that we should love others as we love ourselves. Sometimes, though, it is unclear how this plays out in practical terms. What does it even mean to love others as we love ourselves? In my opinion, loving others involves empathy, compassion, and care. And I think we must begin with ourselves.

The Good Samaritan, William Etty 1838 The Good Samaritan, William Etty 1838

Beginning with Ourselves (and God)

If we do not love ourselves very well, then we are not prepared to love others fully. We carry baggage like pain, guilt, and low-self-worth, and instead of caring for ourselves we often fall into self-destructive patterns. How can we love others as ourselves if we do not feel lovable?

But once we realize that God loves us as we are—without condition, that God understands our personal issues, and that God desires the good for us—then we can see ourselves as…

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