“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, Who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” 2 Corinthians 2:3-4 ESV
There’s nothing like coming home from a hard day and sinking into an easy chair. And if it reclines-bonus! What about being enveloped by a fleece blanket when the temperature has dropped outside? Or the sigh of satisfaction after taking that first bite of your favorite dessert. All those are pictures of comfort and being comfortable.
Misery loves company--as they say. I suppose that could mean someone complaining just wants others to chime in, to commiserate with them. I have been guilty of both scenarios. It could also mean that someone is struggling and needs someone to be with them. I tend to lean to the latter of those interpretations.
One of the many commonalities of the human condition is the need for someone to understand. We want to be seen and heard. It’s how we are wired.
When Jesus came to earth, Philippians 2:7 says He emptied Himself and took on the form of a servant and was born in the likeness of man. He became one of us. He laid aside all the comforts of Heaven and became a man of sorrows and was no stranger to grief (Isaiah 53:3). Just knowing that He faced everything that I have or will face brings me comfort. I’m not alone in my suffering.
We all have (or will) face the death of a loved one. Some have faced job loss, serious illness, loneliness, rejection, and pain in general. There again, evidence that we are human and live in a fallen world.
But why? Another common question. Some things don’t and may never make sense. Many times I look for the lesson to be learned. At times, I learn what God was trying to teach me.
Still, as 2 Corinthians 2:3-4 says, we sometimes go through trials to simply comfort someone else. Maybe along with asking God to teach us lessons we need to learn, we should ask Him to use us to comfort someone else. I have and He has answered my prayer. I don’t do it in my own strength. I have the Holy Spirit, who is the ultimate comforter, to guide me.
So, are you “comfort-able?” That is, able to comfort? Next time you encounter someone who is struggling, picture yourself as that cozy fleece blanket. If you can physically wrap your arms around them, do so. Listen. Tell your story. Pray with them. I can assure you that you will receive comfort as well.
Heavenly Father, Thank You for sending Jesus. How comforting to know I don’t face my trials and tribulations alone. Lord, may I be used in the midst of hard times as a comfort to someone else. Amen.