“In this world you will have trouble, but take heart! I have overcome the world!” Jesus
Trouble. Difficulty. Distress. Anxiety. Grief. Burden. The list goes on and on… for many of us. Whether it’s minor pain or major heartache, most of us have suffered some sort of trouble. Those of you who haven’t…watch out. It may be right around the corner. This is just a fact of life in the world in which we live. Those we love get sick, friends we care about get caught up in addiction, people we don’t even know commit horrific acts of violence. Sometimes the world around us can be so disheartening and disturbing that we withdraw altogether, which can take us to equally troubling places deep within ourselves. We can end up feeling hopeless, helpless to bear the burden. But … I know I was hoping for a ‘but’ right about now. But… there is hope! Comfort in calamity, Peace in pain, Hope in hardship. His name is Jesus. And He has overcome…and wants us to, as well!
“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…”
2 Corinthians 1.3-4a
Comfort is a beautiful thing! Too bad we have to actually go through some trouble in order to experience the truth of that statement. As I look back over my life, I’ve come to realize that the times I’ve been comforted most by my Loving Father are the moments I have hurt most. No pain, no gain. Not only have I received comfort in my troubles, I hope I’ve been able to give comfort as well.
“…so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”
2 Corinthians 1.4b
My encouragement to you… and frankly, to myself… is to go to Jesus when trouble comes. Not only will He bring peace to our anxious hearts and give us hope to endure life’s stormiest seasons, He will bring purpose to our troubles. When we realize that whatever difficulty we’re going through can actually result in compassion toward others in their troubles … we can face whatever lies ahead … and help someone else to do the same.