What My 6-Year Old Taught Me About Compassion

She is relentless in many ways, and many of these can be very frustrating at times. At other times, however, her relentlessness is precious.

One of these is her relentless compassion.

Our Katie cannot see a need without demanding a response. She’s the only one of my girls who will not hesitate to apply a tender kiss to a ‘scabby’ sore on her daddy’s knee. Her desire to apply a plaster to a scratch on the forehead will often end up being a bandage covering eyes, nose, mouth and ears.

It is impossible for her to see an appeal by a charity organisation on the television without demanding that I respond immediately by texting the given number and making the much needed donation. The only reason I have any money left in my bank account at such times is because I have a “Pay as You Go” plan which doesn’t allow me to make such donations. I’ve tried! At her demands, I’ve tried again…and again…and again!

A little while ago she brought me a letter she had written. She wanted me to send it to ‘the refugees’. I will copy it as she has written it, and leave you to decipher it:

Dear Iraqs,

I now haw you fiyl with pepl truying to cil you and you dont haf a hom.

Lots luf from Katie
I will pray for you

What makes her letter and its contents so precious is that, because she is the most introspective of my daughters, I know her words follow much contemplation. She has allowed herself to think deeply about what mummies and daddies and their children in Iraq and Syria are feeling. Her words stem from a wounded heart!

My little girl has taught me something so valuable about compassion, and it is this: Compassion is not the giving of my donation. That is kindness.
Now, kindness is good. But kindness is about the object given.

COMPASSION is better, because BEFORE IT GIVES THE OBJECT, IT GIVES THE HEART. And when it gives the heart, it gives the object again, and again, and again.

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