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God’s Story... For My Life - Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Take Comfort

Read 2 Corinthians 1:3-11

All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ. Even when we are weighed down with troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation! For when we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer. We are confident that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in the comfort God gives us.

We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us. And you are helping us by praying for us. Then many people will give thanks because God has graciously answered so many prayers for our safety.
(2 Corinthians 1:3-11)

Reflect

Paul had a radically different view of suffering. Suffering—especially trials and discomfort associated with the advancement of Christ’s kingdom—is God’s way of allowing Christians to become more like Jesus, to suffer for the gospel just as Jesus suffered for it (Philippians 1:29; 3:10). God uses suffering to improve his people and shape them into better Christians. In fact, suffering can be thought of as the necessary pain that accompanies spiritual growth.

Many think that when God comforts us, our troubles should go away. But if that were always so, people would turn to God only out of a desire to be relieved of pain and not out of love for him. We must understand that being comforted can also mean receiving strength, encouragement, and hope to deal with our troubles. The more we suffer, the more comfort God gives us.

Respond

If you are feeling overwhelmed, ask God to comfort you. Remember that every trial you endure will help you comfort other people who are suffering similar troubles. As he comforts you, he enables you to comfort others