Bringing comfort - Hope 103.2

Bringing comfort

Morning Devotions is for those curious about the Christian faith and who want to explore Christian issues that relate to their daily life.

By Chris WittsSunday 30 Mar 2014Morning Devotions with Chris WittsCultureReading Time: 0 minutes


Life has a habit of causing disruptions and we face difficult times. And then we need to face up to loneliness,being weary in mind or body,separation from friends or family,the loss of someone close to us,sickness and pain. And the list goes on. Sorrow is a universal emotion common to all people. For example – an old man in his mid 80’s said one day to his son “What good am I now? Why does God leave me here? I feel so useless”. Or a lady who just lost her husband after 45 years of marriage. She wrote in a note “I miss him so much after all these wonderful years. I cry a lot. Is it wrong to weep and feel such sorrow?” These are real issues,and maybe you can relate to them personally today. Or a young man who was just informed by his doctor he has the signs of cancer and must undergo surgery immediately. These are a few examples of real life experiences. In these times,we need someone who can bring help and comfort. There are times in all of our lives when we experience loss and need to be comforted. We may lose our job. Or a relationship. Or a dream. Or a loved one. During any season of loss and grief we may feel afraid,powerless and alone. What we need most during these times is to be comforted. We need the strength and hope that come from knowing deeply that we are not alone-from knowing that the God of all comfort has promised to be present with us in times of loss. God’s very name is Comforter,or paraclatos. God stands beside us,with us,listening to our complaints in the middle of the night. Listening to our quiet rage and frustration and despair,God speaks softly and says,”I am with you. I will help you. Is my arm too short that I cannot reach down to earth and help you up? Is my arm too short that I cannot help you stand again?” Our God is a God of comfort. God stands beside us and pulls us up when we are down.

Psalm 34:18 says “The Lord is there to rescue all who are discouraged and have given up hope.”. 

I’d like to say that life begins and ends with comfort. A tiny little baby is born and this new born baby is startled by the newness of life,and the new born baby cries out. That baby is then comforted and cuddled by an attending nurse,trying to calm that baby down. The years fly by far too quickly,and that little baby becomes a dying grandma or grandpa,and at that point,that elderly baby needs to be comforted as he or she prepares to die. And so life begins and ends with comfort. And every day and every month and every year in between,human beings are designed in such a way that we need to be comforted and also give comfort to others.  Our God is a God who comforts. Our God is a God who stretches his hand from heaven to pull us up when we are down. God comes to us when we are down and out,washed out,tired out,worn out. God comes down to us and comforts us just by listening to us. Just by listening to the howling of our aching hearts.

My favorite author Henri Nouwen  once wrote about the need to have a friend who understands and helps us and brings comfort to our lives. I like what he says :

When we honestly ask ourselves which people in our lives mean the most to us,we often find that it is those who,instead of giving much advice,solutions,or cures,have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion,who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement,who can tolerate not-knowing,not-curing,not-healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness,that is the friend who cares (book – Out of Solitude).

According to the Bible,God is the “Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,who comforts us in all our troubles” (II Corinthians 1:3-4). God is a God of comfort who actively seeks to comfort us. To receive comfort from God is to let God be present with us during our times of distress. It is to let God sit next to us and listen to whatever we need to say; it is to let God hold us and remind us that we are loved,we are valued and we are not alone. “Letting God be God” means letting God give himself to us as our Comfort in times of loss and distress.

Sometime read Matthew 11:28-30. Allow yourself to hear this direct invitation from Jesus to come with your burdens. “if you are tired from carrying heavy burdens,come to me and I will give you rest. Take the yoke I give you. Put it on your shoulders and learn from me. I am gentle and humble,and you will find rest. This yoke is easy and this burden is light”.

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