A Prayer to Help You Comfort Others – Your Daily Prayer – April 25

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A Prayer to Help You Comfort Others
By Jessica Van Roekel

“Blessed by the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.” – 2 Corinthians 1:3-5, ESV

Have you ever wondered if there is any purpose in your suffering? We certainly don’t go looking for suffering—it comes to us because life is a journey through difficulties and triumphs. Sufferings are a reminder of what Jesus Christ went through and it is a way for us to encourage others. Sufferings help us learn to rely on God, not ourselves. It grows our hope because not only do we share in Christ’s sufferings, but we share in his comfort. Then, we get to spread his solace to other people in their sufferings, so they have hope too.

The Apostle Paul wrote 2 Corinthians to encourage the faithful believers at Corinth and to challenge and expose the false teachers who wanted to change the message of Christ. The book, First Corinthians, addresses these issues in detail, but this letter opens with a greeting followed by the reminder that God is a comforter through all they may face. The Greek word for comfort is paraklesis and it means to stand with a person, encouraging and helping him or her in times of trouble. Have you ever had someone stand by you through thick or thin? God fulfills this role by sending the Holy Spirit to comfort his children. He is with us always—in the good and the bad times.

The Christian life includes both hardship and blessings, often at the same time. Suffering allows us to better relate to Jesus, but we are promised that with every degree of suffering we face, we have greater comfort from him when we depend on him. Paul learned through experience and went on to share with us in Romans 8:38-39 that no suffering, no matter how severe, can separate those who wholeheartedly follow Jesus. Paul’s sufferings included many tribulations, deep distress at society’s defiance and opposition toward God, beatings, shipwrecks, imprisonment, grief over saying goodbye to loved ones, anguish over those who refused to accept Jesus as their Messiah, and distress over wondering if some might be tempted to abandon their faith. Rather than focusing on his sufferings, he shares the encouragement he received from God with us.

He had firsthand knowledge of God’s comfort, and through the words he writes, he extends it to us, too. Our sufferings lead us closer to Christ, not because they hurt, but because of the comfort we receive from him. Then, they can lead us closer to one another because we can share with one another the same kind of solace God gave us. God’s comfort wraps us in his peace, which fills us with a calmness when chaos trounces through life. It’s a hope that doesn’t disappoint when we face crushing bad news. Experiencing God’s compassion is knowing that he will not leave us nor forsake us, but that we can rely on him for companionship when we walk the lonely road of suffering.

Let’s pray:

Holy God,
Thank you for not leaving us to flounder in our sufferings. We praise you for your comfort that supersedes the pain we may feel. Help us to view our suffering through the lens of knowing your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord better. Show us your nearness when all we can see is our pain. Remind us of your strength when we are weak. Help us know your encouragement. Then, show us who we can comfort. You don’t bring us through the hard places in life and then expect us to keep your amazing hope and presence to ourselves. No, you call us to share your help with other people so they might know the hope in you that doesn’t disappoint and the peace that carries them through impossible situations. Show us how our suffering has purpose in the life of someone else because of the comfort we can give them. Thank you for how you work in our lives.
In Jesus’ name, Amen

Photo credit: ©Getty Images/PeopleImages

Jessica Van Roekel author headshotJessica Van Roekel loves the upside-down life of following Jesus as she journeys to wholeness through brokenness. As an author, speaker, and worship leader, she uses her gifts and experiences to share God’s transformative power to rescue, restore, and renew. She longs for you to know that rejection doesn’t have to define or determine your future when placed in God’s healing hands. Find out more reframingrejectionbook.com You can connect with her on Instagram and Facebook.

Teach Us to Pray is a FREE prayer podcast hosted by iBelieve writer Christina Patterson. Each week, she gives you practical, real-life tips on how to grow your faith and relationship with God through the power of prayer. To listen to her episode on What to Pray in the Morning for a Worry-Free Day, click below!

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