Comfort

Comfort Have you ever noticed that bad things sometimes happen to good people? It’s one of those contradictions in our world. It doesn’t always make sense.

 

Think about Job, a man who lived back in Bible times. He had a whole bunch of bad stuff happen to him … even though he was a good man who lived a good life. His friends started out by just being a comfort to him, which was good, but then they tried to figure out ‘why’ all of this bad stuff was happening. They thought it might be because Job had done something wrong and they ended up being a source of further pain for Job rather than a comfort.

 

When people go through difficult times, they need our care, our concern, and our comfort. They don’t need our great insights on the complexities of life.

 

Thankfully, God is a God of comfort. He understands our suffering. In fact, he has suffered himself and he is able to help us through our times of difficulty. Let’s partner with God and be a comfort to those around us going through difficult times.

 

Comfort … think about it.

9 Replies to “Comfort”

  1. Your post brings up an age-old and irritating Christian problem – we don’t know what to say to hurting people and so often don’t receive what we need from others when we are hurting. To quote Larry Crabb (“Connecting”), “The usual pattern for most of us in dealing with a hurting friend is to retreat, reprove or refer. We establish a ssfe distance between us and the emotionally troubled…reciting Christian phrases that arouse no passion…Or we try to scold people into holier living…the most popular reaction …is to refer [to counselling]…When we think that pressuring people to do what’s right will promote good change, we aren’t concerned with connecting with people. Connected community, not good advice, not deeper insight, is at the center of things…because it is the defining center of God.”

  2. If a Christian is defined as someone that confesses Christ as Lord thereby declaring that they follow His commandments, how does such a Christian, in general, differ from a non-Christian when consoling or helping a hurting person?
    How does a Christian that helps to feed the poor differ from a non-Christian that helps to feed the poor?
    Is there a difference?

  3. Good comments, Grace – and good questions Warrick. I think all humans can console others who are going through difficult times. Followers of Christ have a mandate to do so, because Jesus came to help the hurting and calls his followers to do the same – whether they feel like it or not. In the same way, all humans can and do help the poor, but Christ-followers once again have a mandate to do so. It’s part of their God-given life purpose.

  4. I believed that sometimes when bad things happened to good people especially christians, it could be a way God is letting us experience how walking in the others shoes actually feels.
    Sometimes when we suffered the bad stuff, we actually know how it feels. No amount of empathy can equate the experience of going through the bad stuff and then relating to the other person.

  5. Thank you for your timely word. Someone in my small group is going through an incredible number of grievous things in her life right now. All of them are completely outside of her control. Yet when we asked how we could pray for her, she apologized for breaking down and crying. You are so right on with this. People need our comfort and care. We need to be a refuge for each other in difficult times. We cannot be a substitute for the Lord, but we can try to be like Him in small ways.

  6. I believe that with God by our side we can go past anything. At the moment my dear sister is going through a very hard time,and it hurts me very much to see her in this situation but i know that God is with us and He is the One that gives me the right words when i need to encourage my sister. Thank you Jesus for always being with us, in happy times and sad times as well,because without you we would be nothing

  7. Heard this in a message this week which I thought was apt given you’re talking about comfort.
    Rather than the sentimental notion we have of comfort being like a warm couch or spa or a sense of relief from trouble, it appears at its very root, “comfort” means to goad, to strengthen, to reinforce, to prod.
    In an ancient tapestry (called the Bayeux Tapestry) which depicts William the Conqueror’s advance to defeat the English, there’s a scene in which Bishop Odo—a figure on a horse, a knight—is pushing a sword into the rear end of a foot soldier. The foot soldier doesn’t want to go into a hail of crossbow arrows, and this figure Odo is pushing the sword, forcing him into the line. Poor terrified soldier needed a prod in his behind to keep him going and the caption ironically says, “Odo comforts his troops.”
    The point being that comfort is more akin to fortifying and strengthening, which I thought was good. God comforts us (His Holy Spirit is our Comforter) but it doesn’t mean we always get relief from our troubles which we’d love to get away from.

  8. Dear Mark
    This is the very first time on your blog and I am new to your church. what I have found in my travels and self assessment especially around hurt, wounded or grieving people is that mostly we want to know that someone cares even before we will trust and surrender our position, so comfort is important but it must be given with room for us to move.

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