The God of ALL Comfort

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My heart is with some dear friends in Oklahoma this week. We received tragic news (last week) of the passing of a genuine man of God – a husband, a father, a great example of Christ. It left us speechless. What do you even say when a tragedy crashes into the scene of a dear friend? What do you even do when you’re holding her hands or if you’re 400 miles away?

At first you feel a bit helpless, am I right? Then you want to do everything you can to help, whatever that looks like.

I’ve learned that sometimes there are people much closer to the situation/friend that can help better than I can. I’ve also learned that if I am one of those “inner circle” people, I can let God use me until I’m completely spent, but in the end, I’m still going to need to entrust my friend to Him.

One of my favorite things about God is that He is ever-present. I am only able to be in one place at one time. And even if I could be present with my friend, I’m not sure I’d be the comfort she needs anyway.

But my God, He knows how to comfort, in every situation, and He does it perfectly. That is actually one of the things John mentions as the Spirit’s “job” when He comes to dwell in the believer (John 14:16, 26; 15:26, 16:7 He is called “Comforter” or “Helper” depending on your translation). The Spirit of God knows the mind of God, and He also knows what is in our hearts and minds (1 Corinthians 2:11). This is such an amazing blessing for us! He intercedes for us with groans that words can’t express when we have no clue what to say or do. AND He somehow infuses into our hearts and minds the comfort and peace we need in those moments of sheer tragedy. {Note to self: try and remember this when you find yourself in the midst of tragedy.}

I’m discovering that what I can do when these terrible nightmares hit is pray for more Spirit, for more of God’s presence in the life of my friends. The grieving heart will be well handled in the hand of its Creator.

Then I watch God work. Sometimes we get to be pulled alongside as God’s instruments of comfort with a word of truth spoken at just the right moment or a hug that envelopes the grieving heart. But other times we watch and behold the God of all comfort who is well acquainted with our grief and yet also knows how to massage the wounds that grief leaves in its wake. He is so beautiful.

One final note. I’ve heard many people say that after they’ve lost a loved one, they receive lots of comfort and attention at first, but that slowly goes away and they are eventually forgotten. I really don’t want that to happen. Ever. So may I humbly suggest the importance of being sensitive to the needs of those around us in the months and years to come. My heart is definitely there now, but I don’t want to let the passing of time lessen my desire to lift someone to the God of all comfort (who, by the way, never forgets).

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About ashleydfarmer

I love learning and teaching. I occasionally get ridiculously excited over small things and hopefully have learned to describe them well enough for others to get just as excited as I do (hence this blog). I believe God's word is truth and brings understanding and joy to the one who hears and accepts it. My passion is for Him first, my family second, and the ministry He's given me third (whatever that looks like). I also happen to love tennis :) but I suppose that's for a different blog...

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