troubles and comfort
2 Corinthians 1:3-11
Read Psalm 145:18-19 and note what is required of us to experience the presence of God and His comforting ways.
How has God comforted you? What have you gone through that can be used by God to comfort others? What comfort will you bring someone today?
Several years ago when my follicular lymphoma (cancer) was first diagnosed, I participated in a cancer clinical trial. It included the best of the standard (protocol) chemo treatment along with a special agent—a monoclonal antibody called Rituxin.
Recently a friend who is also battling follicular lymphoma received Rituxin as part of her standard treatment. In some small way my clinical trial answered some questions that helped pave the way for her treatment today.
It’s true. The tough stuff we go through can be used by God to help others. Paul wrote, “[God] comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others” (2 Corinthians 1:4). So the trials you’re facing today are preparing you for someone’s tomorrow. There’s purpose in your pain!
To know these truths can truly encourage our hearts when we’re up against it. Realizing that God Himself is comforting and rescuing us (2 Corinthians 1:4,10) allows us to confidently, worshipfully, take another step toward healing and helping (2 Corinthians 1:3). It’s so important then, as we’re facing difficulties, to focus our eyes in two areas: On God—Paul proclaimed, “All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort” (2 Corinthians 1:3). On others—“When we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you” (2 Corinthians 1:6). Getting our eyes off ourselves and onto others is vital to our spiritual health.
Whether we face illness, relationship pain, persecution for our faith, or other trying circumstances—some even “beyond our ability to endure” (2 Corinthians 1:8)—the comfort of God will meet us where we are. The hope, peace, love and joy that He provides can then be generously shared.
God comforts us so that we can comfort others.
NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Mark 8:22-9:1
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