What Is Compassion?

Our local news did a story not long ago about a baby who needed a heart transplant. One of the channels, which teeters toward the sensational, showed Baby Andrew’s picture and posted a video of him laboring to breathe.  As I viewed the tubes crawling from every tiny place imaginable, I turned away in anger. What kind of life are these parents so desperate for Baby Andrew (and small fighters like him) to have? He will be dependent his entire life, not to mention in and out of hospitals. Andrew may not fully understand what all the fuss is about now. He’ll know that he has a bad heart, but as he sits inside, for most of his life, and watches children play or athletes practice, as he is reminded by someone to take his 20 medications, as he lives in fear at every new pain, as he battles other health problems caused by medications, as he undergoes more surgery, maybe he’ll become a little angry too.

So what is compassion? Is compassion forcing a child to live and beseeching others to give so that their child can have a chance at “life” or is it allowing the child to naturally go and be with God? This particular story has a happy ending because Andrew got a new heart. It is a happy ending for his parents, but is it a happy one for Andrew?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s