Here’s the thing about life, it can be difficult. There are going to be days, even seasons of darkness, hardship, trial. There’s no escaping those times, only persevering through them. The good news is that we don’t have to tough it out on our own.
When I was in my mid-20s, my wife Teri and I were going through just such a time. My grandfather told me that he wouldn’t be surprised if the Lord used this time to equip us to help others who would face similar challenges later in life.
Recently Teri and I found ourselves facing another dark season. We still are in the midst of it. We received a card from some dear friends who had years ago faced a very similar situation. Their words were full of hope, love, understanding and comfort. It’s amazing how a few thoughtful words can take the edge off a difficult day. The situation still faces us, but somehow hearing from those friends who had already persevered through it made it seem not quite so dark.
Paul wrote to the Corinthians about affliction and comfort. In the span of three short verses (2 Corinthians 1:3-5) he uses the word “comfort” six times. To paraphrase; God comforts us in all our affliction, so that we will be able to comfort others with the same comfort with which God has comforted us.
Paul goes on to say, “For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ.” And that wonderful blessing of being able to share our comfort with one other is a source of the deepest joy.
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