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Comfort is closer than you think

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Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 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. 5 For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. 6 If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. 7 Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. – 2 Corinthians 1:3-7

 

In Philippians 2, Paul presupposes the chance to experience comfort when he says, “if there is… any comfort from love.” Using the word comfort suggests some pre-existing form of undesired emotion such as pain, grief or distress. Paul, himself, is definitely experiencing a mixture of these emotions – likely both physical and emotional discomfort – being separated from his dear friends and sitting under harsh antagonism of Roman influence. Yet, he assumes there is a direct correlation between our connection with Christ’s love and the comfort we feel.

Comfort often comes in its greatest dosage from those who’ve experienced what we’re going through. Paul recognizes Jesus familiarity with pain, grief and distress because He lived it. Jesus acquainted himself with everything Paul felt. He emptied himself and learned the way of servitude. He willingly faced martyrdom separated from his Father. Why? Because Jesus couldn’t hold back love for Paul or for us.

It’s clear Paul actually feels Christ’s love and is comforted by it. In discomfort, Paul turns to Jesus’ humanity to experience divine consolation. Then, boldly proclaims the all-surpassing truth over his life to experience a resurgence of strength from the giant bear hug of Jesus’ shared experience wrapping comfort around his soul. Thus, Paul tasted divine happiness because Jesus’ love alleviated his pain.

So, whatever discomfort you’re feeling today, know that comfort is closer than you think because Jesus is not far off. In Paul’s letter to the church in Corinth, he declares God to be the “God of all comfort who comforts us in all our afflictions” (1 Corinthians 1:3-4). This means there is no affliction Jesus can’t comfort. No distress Jesus can’t ease. No pain Jesus can’t heal. Today, meditate on God’s love – demonstrated by sending Jesus Christ to share in our humanity and comfort us in all our afflictions.[/vc_column_text][us_separator height=”25px” size=”custom”][vc_column_text]

By Yvonne Biel 

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