Comfort

When tribulations come upon you, it is natural for you to become troubled in your spirit.  Maybe you are suffering persecution for your faith.  Maybe you have lost someone very special in your life.  Maybe you have suffered some tragedy.  Or maybe it is just an accumulation of many trials and disappointments in your life.  Wouldn’t it be great to have someone to come along side of you and assure you that everything will be all right and comfort you in your tribulations?  You and I have that someone, and it is God the Father.  2 Corinthians 1:3-4 “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 tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”  God is the Father of all mercies and God of all comfort. 

You can feel comforted when you realize that you are not alone; there is someone else who walks beside you in your time of trial – someone who sees everything that is happening, understands what you are going through, and cares for you.  1 Peter 5:6-7 “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”  The hurt will not last forever; the Father will make sure that eventually all will work out for your good.  That is the kind of God that we have; the Father of mercies and God of all comfort.

There is another kind of comfort from God.  In the 5th chapter of 1 Corinthians we find that the church in Corinth was tolerating a man who had his father’s wife.  The apostle Paul was very critical of them for their tolerance of sexual immorality and told them to discipline the man by not keeping company with him.  In 2 Corinthians, we find that Paul’s criticism and instruction had an impact upon the Corinthians.  They repented of their sin and demonstrated Godly sorrow (2 Corinthians 7:8-11).  The sexually immoral man also repented and was sorrowful for his sin (2 Corinthians 2:6-8).  So the apostle Paul starts off the book of 2 Corinthians by telling them that our God is a Father of mercies and God of all comfort.  He is merciful and forgiving of their sin and He is now there to comfort them.  In Luke 15:11-32, Jesus tells the story of the man who had two sons.  The younger son took his inheritance and wasted his possessions with prodigal living.  When all was spent, he found himself hungry and in need.  He determined to go back to his father, confess his sin, and ask to be made a hired servant.  But the father had compassion, ran to meet him, and welcomed him home.  He made a feast to celebrate his son’s return.  He had mercy on his son and then sought to comfort him because he had repented and returned.  The lesson we learn from the Corinthian church and from the story of the prodigal son is that God is a Father of mercies and God of all comfort.  If you have sinned and departed from God, return and discover that He is a Father of mercies and God of all comfort.

Regardless of what happens to you here, you can be comforted by the promise of eternal life.  Jesus said in John 14:1-3 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”   You can be comforted about those who precede you in death.  1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 “For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep.  For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.  Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.  Therefore comfort one another with these words.”

When others suffer trials, you should be there to support them.  Romans 12:15 “Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.”  When you successfully come through a trial, you can realize that God was with you and He used the trial to build your character.  Romans 5:3-5 “And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.  Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”  From your experience, you can comfort others in the trials that they experience.  2 Corinthians 1:3-4 “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 tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”  1 Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.”  

My encouragement to you is to seek comfort from the Father.  2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 “Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.”