Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him.  As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her.

 When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.”

Luke 7:11-13


A devotional planner I once used had a very good definition for love: It is “an intense feeling of tender affection and compassion for someone.” The comment:

“People are longing to be accepted. When we show care and concern for them they will find their deepest emotional needs being met.”

And don’t we all hunger for this kind of love? Unfortunately, there is a lot of misunderstanding of those living with mental illness. And so we often don’t feel loved. And how very painful that is! It increases our suffering. I’m praying that people will try to put themselves in our shoes and understand the pain we feel.

But we who live with mental health issues are truly the best equipped to show this kind of love to others who, like us, might be struggling emotionally. We would bless others if we could give them the kind of unconditional love we ourselves long for. As we bless others, we ourselves will also be blessed.

Jesus’ heart went out to the woman who had lost her only son. “Don’t cry.” he said. Can you feel that compassion?

Are you hurting in some way? Jesus understands what you feel and has compassion. He tells you too, “Don’t cry.” Jesus cares more than anyone else could. And He will stay with you.

marja bergen