Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | March 12, 2015

March 12, 2014 “The God of All Comfort”

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” (2 Corinthians 1: 3-4)

Good Morning and a Blessed Day to All!

When I was a child, the home in which I grew up had a great back yard. There were small hills to roll down, trees to climb, plenty of ground to make fresh mud pies, and even cherries to pick right off the tree. There were great hiding places when a game of “Hide-And-Seek” was the order of the day, and lots of places to run when playing tag. I loved that place. But from time to time as I played, I would stop and run back into the house to make sure my mother or dad was still there. I’d run over and give him or her a hug and then go back outside, reassured of their comforting presence. I didn’t need to be coddled at such times…just knowing they were close at hand was enough to assuage any childhood angst that they weren’t in eyesight but were nearby. That was a source of great strengthening to me as I was growing up. Of course, during those times I did need greater attention, they were there as well, a continuing source of strength and comfort. Do you know the derivation of the word “comfort? Christian missionary to India, Amy Carmichael, provides the answer as she writes,

“The word comfort is from two Latin words meaning “with” and “strong” – He is with us to make us strong. Comfort is not soft, weakening commiseration; it is true, strengthening love.”

I believe that is what Paul was striving to convey to the Christians in Corinth when he wrote,

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” 

When he referred to God as “the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort”, the two words he uses, “compassion” and “comfort” mean “with suffering” and “with strength”. He tells the Corinthians that God knows all about suffering and strengthens us so we might be a source of strength and encouragement to others as well, encouraging one another with the same compassion and comfort we have experienced from God…with “true strengthening love.” As a loving mother pities her children when they are hurting or insecure…as a father’s arms provide strength and reassurance, such is the love of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ to us. Turn to Him. Learn of His strengthening, reassuring love for you. Then go and share that same love, compassion, and comfort with others, for that is the will of your Father in Heaven. Let’s pray!

Compassionate, Comforting Lord; Your redeeming love for me has strengthened and encouraged me through many times of trial. It has been a constant source of reassurance and encouragement. It is my desire to let that same river of comfort flow from my heart to others, that they might also be strengthened in times of trial. Make me an instrument of your peace, I pray, in Jesus’ Name. Amen!

 

 

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