Friday, August 23, 2013

"In All Our Tribulation"

    The piercing of our Lord's heart on the cross of Calvary speaks to His perfect identification with "the feeling of our infirmities" (John 19:34; Hebrews 4:15).

     Aching and breaking hearts find the Lord Jesus Christ drawing near with complete understanding, identification, and empathy.  He "comforteth us in all our tribulation" because He perfectly knows what and how we feel when the swords of our lives thrust into the depths of our being (II Corinthians 1:4).  The blades come in many sizes, many shapes, and many degrees of keenness and ferocity.  All hurt, and some pierce so deeply and with such violence that we cannot imagine the possibility of recovery from the wounds inflicted.  Indeed, we may feel as did the prophet: "
For these things I weep; mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul is far from me: my children are desolate, because the enemy prevailed" (Lamentations 1:16). 

     The truth of the matter is that our Comforter is not far from us at all, but rather more near than ever as "a very present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1). In such times, however, we may seem to have but a mustard seed of faith to plant concerning God's ability to apply comforting balm and salve to our bleeding soul.  We may well feel as if overwhelming sorrow will always be our portion, and that the sword will never be removed.  Thankfully, that mustard seed is all that our Heavenly Father requires in order to bring forth an abundant harvest of comfort in the heart of the child who casts his offering into soil that itself may seem fallow and lifeless.  In such times, we might pray...

    "Heavenly Father, I do not see how You can comfort me.  I don't know how You can remove the sword that presently pierces my heart.  But I choose to believe that You can, and that You will.  I believe that You know the pain I feel, and that somehow You abide therein.  And I believe that You are wise enough, strong enough, loving enough, and present enough to comfort me.  I have but this tiny seed, Father.  But I believe it will be enough to receive a portion of redeeming life far beyond any balm I can imagine.  I thank You, and I look to You as the Comforter You are, and who You promise to be.

    The One who made our hearts can heal the wounds that pierce our hearts.  This is the Truth, and our experience thereof awaits our choice to believe in the God who, again, "comforteth us in all our tribulation."

I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever."
(John 14:16)

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