From my reading in 2 Corinthians 1 in the One Year Bible New Testament.
I am grateful that the Bible gives us tools on how to process both the good and the bad times.
The Apostle Paul explains an important reason God allows hard times in our lives. Notice how many times the words suffering, trouble and comfort are repeated!
“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ. Even when we are weighed down with troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation! For when we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer. We are confident that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in the comfort God gives us.” 2 Cor 1:3-7
In these four verses the word comfort is used 9 times, and the words trouble and suffer are used 6 times! He’s hammering in the point…
God comforts the suffering, so they can comfort others who suffer.
If you are going through a hard time, the first step is the receive God’s comfort. Many people suffer but refuse to come to God for comfort.
To comfort others with God’s comfort you must first be comforted by God.
The best person to comfort someone who has lost a loved one is someone else who has been down that road and has relied on God to fill their relational void. The best person to comfort someone dealing with depression is someone who has walked that path and found comfort in Christ. The best person to console someone with money problems is someone who has been broke and seen God provide.
You can not give away what you have not received.
If you are in the middle of suffering right now, pursue God. His comfort is available to you. His healing is available. Come to him and receive his comfort. It is not usually an overnight process, but over time God will uses you as an agent of his comfort for others.
When you are suffering, be willing to accept God’s comfort through others.
If God wants to use your pain as a comfort to others, you must be willing to receive God’s comfort from others.
If you want to be used to comfort others, then let others comfort you.
Some of us have a “messiah complex.” We are more than willing to comfort others, but when it comes to letting others comfort us we recoil. I want to encourage you to receive God’s comfort through others so that in the future God can uses you to comfort others.
Are you going through suffering right now that you need God’s comfort in?
Do you know anyone who has been through that before that could comfort you?
Is someone you know suffering that you can comfort?
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