Thursday, March 19, 2015

"Their Father's Comfort"

   "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort, who comforteth us in all our tribulation" (II Corinthians 1:3-4).

   A friend recently shared with me the story of a great tragedy.  A fireman in southern Mississippi, responding to a call about an automobile accident, discovered that his two teenaged children were the victims of the calamity.  Both had been killed.

    It's hard to write those words.  I'm sure it is hard for you to read those words.  We can barely begin to imagine the grief of the father when he encountered the reality of his loss, or of the mother and the rest of the family.  Perhaps we cannot begin to imagine.  Some things can only be known when experienced.  This we do know.  "The Father of mercies and the God of all comfort" knows what it is like to lose a child, and He can comfort in any and all tribulation.  No heartache or heartbreak exceeds His capacity to apply balm to the souls of those who trust and submit to Him through the Lord Jesus Christ.  The family involved in the tragedy I mention, the Wards, are apparently believers, and I know you join me in asking our Lord to lead and enable our brothers and sisters to keep their hearts near to His throne of grace in the difficult days to come.  I know also you will keep your own heart near to the Throne in intercession for them.

    The God who made our hearts can repair them even in those dark hours when they seemingly shatter into millions of pieces.  By His Spirit, His Word, and His church He draws more near to us in our hurts than at any other time.  "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1).  Possessed of a heart that is "full of compassion," He rushes to the scene of our calamities, or more accurately, awaits us in them before ever we arrive (Psalm 86:15).  The history of the church sounds and resounds with such grace as the tears of the saints draw their Father's heart and His comforting embrace.  Indeed, our sorrows are His sorrows, and His comfort is our comfort.

    Long ago, a lonely Voice cried out into the darkness of despair, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" (Matthew 27:46).  No answer came, so that in the hour of our broken hearts, an answer will always come.  "Fear thou not, for I am with thee.  Be not dismayed, for I am thy God.  I will strengthen thee, yea, I will help thee, and uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness" (Isaiah 41:10).  Again, I know you join me at the Throne of grace for the Ward family, who will discover and experience their Father's comfort in this day, and in all to come.

"Yea, thou I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me.  Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me."
(Psalm 23:4)

Weekly Memory Verse
   Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in Heavenly places in Christ."
(Ephesians 1:3)

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