“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (ESV)
I sat quietly, listening as each family went around and shared stories about their lives. Children with Autism, Down Syndrome, ADHD, paralysis, behavioral disorders and undiagnosed but devastating symptoms. Each family had a story — a heartbreaking, but beautiful, story.
I tried to give my full attention to each speaker, since this was our first time attending a special needs support group, but I found my mind spinning with doubts, denial and fears.
How did we end up here? Do we really belong?
Even after seven years of seeing doctors and searching for answers to our child’s neurological and behavioral challenges, I was still struggling to accept that I was living a life I’d never imagined or expected.
In fact, life has been nothing like my dreams. Instead it’s brought special needs, financial loss, chronic pain and our family of six all suffering with the painful and devastating symptoms of Lyme Disease.
However, this is the life God has lovingly and purposefully chosen for me, and each and every aspect of it contains an eternal and glorious thread that’s woven into the tapestry of God’s sovereign plan.
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Are you, or is someone you love, hurting? May you be nourished, comforted and encouraged by Sarah Walton and Kristen Wetherell’s words in their book, Hope When It Hurts: Biblical Reflections to Help You Grasp God’s Purpose in Your Suffering. Hurt is real. But so is hope. Sarah and Kristen have walked through, and are walking in, difficult times. So these 30 biblical reflections are full of realism about the hurts of life — yet overwhelmingly full of hope about the God who gives life.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
How have your specific trials and suffering provided an opportunity to encourage and offer the hope of Christ to others in your sphere of influence? Who can you share the comfort of Christ with today?
Post Credit: Proverbs 31 Ministries