Friday, April 27, 2012

Encouragement in the midst of trials

I have recently been going through a growing period in my Christian walk with God, and I am so grateful for it. I was comfortable yet uncomfortable for far too long, crying out but not receiving. Acknowledging but not letting go. Awakening once again to the truth that that is not ALL God has planned for me is exhilarating after slipping into period of passivity. He allowed me to fall, contrite and destitute but for a moment, His saving mercy and grace came swooping in. "Earthly comfort" is not what this life is about, and I do not believe that that is what God has for me! During this time of repentance, healing and growth God has used precious, precious souls to pour HIS heavenly comfort into my own life, and I am overwhelmed with how good my God is. His love for us is unfathomable, undeserved but yet He pours it out freely. The knowledge of that alone, brings peace, joy and freedom into any situation.

Praise to the God of All Comfort

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ,so also our comfort abounds through Christ. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort. 1 Corinthians 1:3-7

In the New King James version, this verse reads "tribulation" instead of troubles, and when I think of tribulation, I instantly feel as though I have never gone through that! But trouble, tribulation, we've ALL had a dose of it whether mild or severe, and it has rocked our world. The beautiful realization I get from this passage is just how amazing God is at orchestrating an outpouring of His overwhelming comfort, through His Spirit covering those believers who are suffering!  As they pressed into God, as the trial pressed into them, a peace that passes worldly understanding covered them. And it doesn't stop there, it is then passed, like a torch to a fellow brother or sister in Christ through the testimony of those who have already been comforted in the midst of their tribulation. Trials, the crushing we receive through our suffering, opens us up to receive God's precious comfort. Comfort is receiving what we need at the moment! God uses trials as a channel to receive comfort through the agency of the Holy Spirit. Trials come for many reasons. Whether it be to wake us up to sin present in our lives, smacking us back to living in accordance with the truths of His word, to strengthen our faith or solely for the purpose of glorifying God and benefiting His kingdom; tribulation causes pain, growth, joy and comfort when it pushes us deeper still into our Heavenly Father's purposed arms. Praising, communing and living for Him today is what it's all about! Eyes open, heart soft, body and soul praising Him alone.

What a beautiful day today is to have the privilege to serve the Lord!

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