Posts Tagged ‘Comfort

30
Jun
16

The God Who Weeps With Us

In John 11, we read of the story of Jesus raising His good friend, Lazarus, from the dead.  There is one thing that I find very comforting from this story of resurrection.  John 11:35 (NIV) says,

Jesus wept.

We memorize it when we are young (probably so we can say we memorized a Bible verse!).  We know that it is one of the shortest verses in the Bible (depending on the translation, Job 3:2 is shorter.  See, you learned something today!).  Why do I find these two words so comforting?  Because Jesus was fully human.  He was fully God.  He knew that He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead.  In John 11:23 (NIV), Jesus told Martha,

Your brother will rise again.

She misunderstood what Jesus was saying.  She thought that He meant that Lazarus would rise at the Resurrection at the end of time.  He then says to her that HE is the Resurrection and the Life.  Everyone who lives and believes in Jesus will never truly die.  We may physically die, but we will live forever because of Him.
Jesus then goes up to the tomb where Lazarus’ body had been placed.  He sees those who are mourning and weeping over the loss of Lazarus.  Some have suggested that Jesus weeps (we’re not talking about shedding a tear.  We’re talking about weeping and sobbing) because of the lack of faith of those around Him.  I don’t believe that this is the case.  Verse 36 tells us that those around Him perceived that Jesus was weeping because He loved Lazarus.
Jesus, though He knew what He was going to do, was overcome with emotion.  Even though He knew that He would see His friend again (and very soon, in fact!), He was still very emotional in the moment.  He wept with those who were weeping.  He mourned with those who were mourning.  He didn’t look down on those who were crying and grieving.  He grieved right along with them.
The next time you are overcome with emotion and are grieving a loss, remember that God knows what it is like to experience loss.  You are not weak if you weep.  You are not soft because you sob.  You are human and Jesus was, too.  Though you know that all things will eventually be raised and restored, it does not mean that you don’t have real emotions in the present.
Go ahead and grieve and mourn.  God is right there with you and He sees and knows your pain.  If you are grieving and mourning today, my prayer is that you will know the peace of God that goes beyond all comprehension and will be comforted by His loving presence.
PRAYER: Father in Heaven, I pray for Your comfort in my life today. I know that You will restore all things and will work all things out for good. Until that day, I need You to comfort me when I mourn and weep. Thank You for Jesus, amen.
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12
Mar
14

Compassion

I am struck by Jesus’ amazing compassion in today’s story from Luke 7.  A widow is part of a funeral procession for her only son.  She had already known the pain and heartache of losing a husband.  Now she was leading the procession out to bury her only son (mothers walked at the front)!  Her body wracked with sobs.  Her heart torn to shreds.  She is barely able to walk as she cries out to God, “Why?!?”  Her soul feels as though it has been pierced by a double-edged sword.  Her relatives try to comfort her, but she refuses to be comforted.  Her only source of joy after the loss of her husband is gone.  Not to mention that there will be no one to take care of her now!  What is she going to do?!?  She is exhausted from mourning.  She wishes that she could die.  What else is there to live for?
As they’re exiting the town gate, there is a commotion.  A huge crowd of people is coming to Nain.  People are shouting and scrambling around one Man.  They’re shouting His name and trying to get close to Him.  They’re loud and boisterous.  Two crowds approaching one another on opposite ends of the emotional spectrum.  One is filled with joy and the other with sorrow.
Then Jesus sees her.  Luke says, “His heart went out to her.”  He stops the crowd.  He silences the celebrants and the mourners.  He says two words to this poor widow, “Don’t cry” (Luke 7:13, NIV).  He sees her and His heart breaks for her.  He has compassion on her.  The Greek word literally means the intestines or guts.  He hurts so badly for her that it causes His insides to ache.
Ancient philosophers would say, “Do not weep, for it does not good.”  Jesus says, “Don’t cry” because He is going to do something good.
He raises her son to life!  He comforts her in her mourning and He rescues her from a life of poverty.
Do you want to know what Jesus is like?  Jesus is kind and compassionate.  He loves us unconditionally and is moved to sympathy by our pain.  Jesus is not mean-spirited.  He is not out to “get” you, except that He wants to “get” you into Heaven.  He is humble and He deals with us gently.  Jesus loves you, this I know!  For the Bible tells us so.  His love is deeper than the ocean and higher than the Heavens.  My prayer for you today is that you would know the compassionate love of the One who died for you.  My prayer for you today is that if you are hurting, He will comfort you and give you peace and strength.  This Jesus who can meet the deepest needs of a mourning widow can meet your deepest needs as well.  Allow Him to comfort you and have compassion on you and love you with His deep, deep love.
  

Luke 7:11-17 (NIV)

Jesus Raises a Widow’s Son

11 Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. 12 As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. 13 When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.”

14 Then he went up and touched the bier they were carrying him on, and the bearers stood still. He said, “Young man, I say to you, get up!” 15 The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.

16 They were all filled with awe and praised God. “A great prophet has appeared among us,” they said. “God has come to help his people.” 17 This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the surrounding country.

12
May
13

The Comfort of God

The Mother’s Day message from Griffith First Christian Church.

The Comfort of God from Shawn Cornett on Vimeo.

29
Oct
12

The Strong Tower of God’s Name

In Proverbs 18, I want to highlight one verse:

The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
the righteous run to it and are safe. (Proverbs 18:10, NIV)

There is something about the name of the Lord.  Psalm 8 says that His name is majestic.  Psalm 113 says that from the rising of the sun until the sun goes down, the name of the Lord is to be praised.  Exodus 20 says that we must not misuse the name of the Lord our God.  Romans says that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.  There is power in the name of the Lord!  We can find strength in the name of the Lord.  Check out this video for a great song about the name of the Lord.  May you find strength, power, hope and comfort in the name of the Lord today.  If you are going through a rough patch or a tough time, call on His name today.  Say, “Lord Jesus, I call on your name today to give me strength, peace, refuge and hope.”  May His holy, awesome name bring you comfort today.
19
Jun
12

God Answers Prayers Now!

Psalm 138

A psalm of David.

I give you thanks, O Lord, with all my heart;
I will sing your praises before the gods.
I bow before your holy Temple as I worship.
I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness;
for your promises are backed
by all the honor of your name.
As soon as I pray, you answer me;
you encourage me by giving me strength.

Every king in all the earth will thank you, Lord,
for all of them will hear your words.
Yes, they will sing about the Lord’s ways,
for the glory of the Lord is very great.
Though the Lord is great, he cares for the humble,
but he keeps his distance from the proud.

Though I am surrounded by troubles,
you will protect me from the anger of my enemies.
You reach out your hand,
and the power of your right hand saves me.
The Lord will work out his plans for my life—
for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever.
Don’t abandon me, for you made me.  –  Psalm 138 (NLT)

Loneliness and abandonment are terrible feelings. Toward the end of Psalm 138, David talks about being surrounded by troubles. He asks the Lord to not abandon him. David, surrounded by his enemies, was scared. He knew that he needed God to help him. He knew that he needed the presence of God to not only comfort him, but to protect him. He cried out to God and took comfort at the thought that God would answer his prayers. Verse 3 says, “As soon as I pray, You answer me.” What a great thought! That not only does God hear our prayers, but He answers them immediately! I know that I sometimes struggle with patience in prayer. That God just doesn’t seem to move fast enough for me. But God knows best. When we cry out to Him, He does move and begin to answer prayers. The answer isn’t always apparent right away, but sometimes the first answer is calm and comfort. The peace that passes understanding. As David fretted over his enemies, God would calm his spirit and give him comfort. So the next time you cry out to God in the midst of a troubling time in your life, know that God will move and answer your prayer as the words leave your lips. Take comfort in His love and His power. Trust that He will do what is best and that He will not abandon you. Then, when you realize and understand how He has answered you, praise His name for His unfailing love.



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