Someone threw a rock and shattered my elderly neighbor’s window. A few of us who live on the street gathered outside of his house to assess the damage. “Sorry, Tom, that you have to deal with this,” a neighbor said to him.
“Don’t you hate people who do this kind of damage?” asked another. Tom shook his head. “No, I don’t. I feel sorry for them.”
“You’re a bigger person than me. I’d hate the person who broke a window at my house,” chimed in another.
“It was a rock that broke my window. Should I hate the rock?” Tom asked.
“But a person threw it,” a woman said.
“Yes. That’s true. But it was the pain inside the person that caused them to throw the rock. I can’t hate that pain. I can only feel compassion for it, for I too, have felt pain,” whispered Tom. I drew in a quick breath, surprised at Tom’s wisdom, his Christ-like heart.
Neighbors shook their heads. I heard one whisper the word “crazy” as they walked away. I remained, not yet wanting to leave the company of such a dear man.
“Do you need any help cleaning up?” I asked.
“No, but thank you for asking,” Tom answered.
“Thank you, for your loving heart,” I said.
“Is there any other kind to have? We must help each other heal from our pain that causes destruction in life, ┬ánot hate it,” he said as he rested his hand on my shoulder.
“The world would be a better place if we could do that,” I said. It would be a better place, indeed.

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