Thursday, March 14, 2013

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

God’s Comfort

 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ…who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4

We all seek comfort.  What is comfort? How does one define comfort in their lives?  Often times people see a comfortable life as one free from suffering and doubt, and as one based on contentment and security.  People often spend their entire lives to make their lives, as well as those closest to them, comfortable.  Our society, often times, puts so much emphasis on making enough money, to not only provide for our basic necessities, but to be able to afford the best luxuries and pleasures the world can offer.  Are we seeking comfort from the Lord or from how much money we make, the houses we live in, the expensive gadgets we use, or possibly from certain addictions such as drugs or alcohol?

Comfort is an amazing blessing from God, and is promised throughout the Bible.  Jesus teaches us that our heavenly father knows our every need and that we should not worry about our life or worry about tomorrow (Matthew 6:25-34).  Jesus also instructs those who are weary and burdened to seek to come to him and he would provide them rest (Matthew 11:28-30).  In Paul’s letter to the Philippians, he states that we should not be anxious about anything but that we should present everything to the Lord in prayer and petition and that peace of God will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (4:6-7).  Our final blessing in our liturgy also shows this as well, “…this Holy Trinity will forgive your sins and comfort your souls.”
 
Can we ever be too comfortable?  Can comfort bring us away from God and God’s work?  Sometimes,  being so comfortable may cause us to lessen our dependence on God and forget our true purpose in this world.  We may be so comfortable in life, with such few problems, that we may just relax and enjoy life without giving thought to those who are suffering around us.  One can be so comfortable that he or she becomes dependent upon the securities of life instead of the Lord.    Often times we become so comfortable in our daily routines, such as school or work, that we forget to seek God or comfort those around us.
 
In Paul’s 2nd letter to the Corinthians, he states “For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows” (1:5).  Paul states that comfort flows to believers when they suffer for Jesus’ sake, and it equips them to comfort others who are in trouble.  Often times we seek and receive comfort from the Lord when we face obstacles, doubt, and suffering.  Do we share God’s comfort with others who need it?  Are we able to leave our “comfort zone” to help others?  There are many in the world who are suffering from poverty, broken heartedness, sickness, and other hurdles in life.  Many in the world seek comfort in the wrong things such as worldly possessions, addictions such as alcohol, or in gaining acceptance from the wrong people.  We need to show love, compassion, and comfort to these people…just as God has done for us.
 
Prayer: “Father, thank you for comforting us through all our daily struggles and life moments, and help us to share your amazing comfort with all those who are struggling and in despair.  Amen.”
Abe Tharakan, St Andrew’s MTC, NY.