Daily D – 2 Corinthians 1:4
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. 2 CORINTHIANS 1:4 (NLT)
Hurt people hurt people. It is hard to be nice when you are suffering pain whether it be emotional or physical. Rationality is a challenge when all of your energy is focused on seeking relief.
What happens on the other side of pain is often extraordinary. Perspective and peace are common. Hurting people who find comfort are most often the best at comforting others who hurt. Comforted people comfort others.
When our daughter was in college, she had an acquaintance who exuded a challenging personality. She could lash out irrationally with the best of them. She was a wound factory. She was a hurt person intent on hurting others thinking it would somehow make her feel better. It did not.
Baby Girl wisely noted how she had never had any real obstacles to overcome in life. She did not know how to handle adversity. She did not know pain’s secret purpose. Having never been comforted from anything more than skinned knees and skin blemishes, she had not embraced the perspective pain produces.
Just as children on bicycles often require training wheels, each of us requires small problems before we get to the inevitable larger variety. We all have them. They arrive uninvited and stay longer than expected. Even when they depart, they leave reminders.
Everyone hurts. Every person you know has been hurt, is hurting, or will be hurt soon. Someone near to your heart will need your comforting presence soon. You do not need wise words artfully expressed. Instead, you need to be near enough to touch, quiet enough to listen, and patient enough to endure until your comfort is fully expressed and tearfully received.
Lead from your strengths. Lead with the comfort you have received. Bones grow stronger in the places where they are broken.
I will comfort others with the comfort I have received.
Our Father, thank you for my wounds now healed. They empower me to see the whole world differently. They empower me to comfort others. What a gift of grace our wounds can be! Use my broken and healed places to strengthen others. Extend your comfort through me. Amen.
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6 Then the LORD spoke to Job out of the storm:
7 “Brace yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.
8 “Would you discredit my justice?
Would you condemn me to justify yourself?
9 Do you have an arm like God’s,
and can your voice thunder like his?
10 Then adorn yourself with glory and splendor,
and clothe yourself in honor and majesty.
11 Unleash the fury of your wrath,
look at all who are proud and bring them low,
12 look at all who are proud and humble them,
crush the wicked where they stand.
13 Bury them all in the dust together;
shroud their faces in the grave.
14 Then I myself will admit to you
that your own right hand can save you
The New International Version (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011), Job 40:6–14.
Job 29:21-25 21 “People listened to me expectantly,
waiting in silence for my counsel.
22 After I had spoken, they spoke no more;
my words fell gently on their ears.
23 They waited for me as for showers
and drank in my words as the spring rain.
24 When I smiled at them, they scarcely believed it;
the light of my face was precious to them.
25 I chose the way for them and sat as their chief;
I dwelt as a king among his troops;
I was like one who comforts mourners.