The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"More Blessed To Give"
Not long after we purchased our beagle Ellie (don't tell her. She thinks she was born into the family!), I recounted to you a time when something frightened her. She ran to me, clearly looking for protection and comfort. I picked her up and held her as she buried her face in my neck, relaxed, and went to sleep. I made the point that as much as Ellie found solace in my arms, I found even more joy in her trust and my ability to comfort her. This reflected the truth that since the Lord Jesus Christ said "it is more blessed to give than to receive," God doubtless loves to comfort us more than we love to be comforted (Acts 20:35).
"Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort, who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God" (II Corinthians 1:3-4).
Two years have not lessened my conviction regarding our Heavenly Father's comfort. I have become more and more convinced that whatever joy we find in His provisions and protections, He finds more. Indeed, "more blessed to give than to receive" exists as the eternal character, nature, and disposition of the God who "is love" (I John 4:8). We best know His love not as it makes its way to us, but rather as it passes through us unto others. Yes, in light of "more blessed to give," we best discover how much God loves us as we love others in the unselfishness that shines most brightly in our hearts as we give rather than receive. "The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us" (Romans 5:5).
Yesterday, Ellie once again found herself frightened by something she heard outside. Our now thirty pound beagle came running to me and this time, jumped into my arms. Once again, she buried her snout in my neck. And once again, I was glad to provide a haven of comfort for someone I love. I thought about our Father yet again. I thought about His heart, which must be the most wondrous place of peace we can imagine. It is, of course. Eternity will not be long enough to complete our journey into the blessedness. However, an interesting feature of forever will be the truth that we will never know comfort in Heaven. No need will exist for it. Comfort only applies to the here and now. These are the only times when God can experience the blessing He finds in applying the balm of His assurance to our frightened or hurting hearts. And these are the days when we must not allow anything to keep us from casting our cares upon the One who cares so much for us (I Peter 5:7). Ellie has furthered my understanding of such a gift, given by the God who loves to comfort us more than we love to be comforted.
"Bless are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted."
"The love of Christ… passeth knowledge."
Weekly Memory Verse
"Consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds."