This week we continue our discussion of the incredible amazing brain in children of divorce. There is so much to know about the brain but for some reason those of us in the church realm haven’t connected with the world of science to learn about how this research can benefit the children we work with in our children’s ministries. Today the topic of empathy is an exciting one to me because as I read and understand the Bible. I see that Jesus brought empathy into the world full force.
Empathy is the ability to feel what someone else is feeling. It is the ability to place ones self in the situation a child or another person is experiencing. For the child of divorce, empathy is you in their life experiencing the break up of the intact family.
When you look at a situation from another person’s perspective it gives you the ability to share their feelings.
Empathy is far different from sympathy. Sympathy is feeling or expressing pity or sorrow for a distress or pain that someone is experiencing. Upon learning of the death of a loved one of a friend, we might say, “I am sorry to hear of your loss.” We have sorrow for them. Empathy is different because with empathy you are not just reacting to the emotions of someone else, you feel the same emotions they do.