“This is my comfort in my affliction, that Your Word has revived me.” – Psalm 119:50
CH Spurgeon, a renowned preacher of his day, had his own fair share of struggles with illness. He wrote these comforting and understanding and insightful words to his students,
… we must at intervals be cast down. The strong are not always vigorous, the wise not always ready, the brave not always courageous, and the joyous not always happy…I note that some whom I greatly love and esteem, who are, in my judgment, among the very choicest of God’s people, nevertheless, travel most of the way to heaven by night.
Perhaps you are so fatigued, ill, overwhelmed in your own affliction, which speaks of great pressure, that reading seems “dry” to you, you cannot even concentrate or remember what you have read and you wonder what the point is! The point is Him! He can take verses you have heard years ago and once it is in you He can bring back to remembrance at such a time when you need it.
I remember once hearing from a Dr. the news that I would have to return to heavy medications to help with my muscle disease. The thought of the side effects were overwhelming and just as I found myself about to spiral down into despair the words came to my heart, “My times are in His hand.” My length of days were dependent upon the Lord Jesus. I cannot tell you when I read that verse, where it is, ” BUT GOD…” knew I needed hope and to be reminded He was in control, and I could rest in the fact He had the final say! He brought those words to my mind from His Word- and what a relief, how refreshing, “My times are in HIS hands.” What comfort to my storm tossed mind and pain ravaged body. What comfort He is.
On another occasion as some men sat at the end of my bed I looked and I knew what one of them did but I could not remember his name. “But God…”’ has so comforted me with this verse-Psalm 119:50 over the years, when I COULD NOT REMEMBER names of people due to months of sleep deprivation and strong medications, I could remember His Word! He has become my comfort in my affliction!
He uses His Word in my affliction to refresh me. And He is no respecter of persons, our Great High Priest, Jesus, who even now prays for you in your troubles, pain and perplexities. He wants you to know there is COMFORT from Him through His Word. Come to Him, ask Him to comfort you through His Word, to refresh you in His Word, and He will be faithful to you. He is the Faithful One who laid His life down for you and took it up again that He may save you, comfort you, and meet you in your pain and perplexities. He desires that you know the reality of “the God of all comfort who comforts His people that they may be able to comfort others in their affliction.” One means that He uses is “His Word of Comfort,” the Scriptures!
GOD’S “JEWEL” OF COMFORT
God will not leave you alone, nor indeed leave you for long without breaking in with a “jewel” from His Word to encourage, comfort, and afford you hope and strength in the midst of your struggle. A specific verse or passage that meets you right where you are! The above verse is such a “jewel” God has used in my own illness when sleep would not come, when pain mocked me and incapacitated, He broke into my circumstances during the night as I read this verse, and it was living, vibrant and so, so applicable to where I was! He is The God of All Comfort. The realities of fears, pressures, oppression, and depression have been known. The joys of hope, race, kindness, tender-mercies, love, forgiveness and mercies have been there likewise. The kindness and friendship of the Lord Jesus a reality. The hope is that somehow you may be able to identify with some of these and perhaps draw from them, knowing that you, too, are not alone in your own struggle. God is Good- He knows you, He cares for you, and you are extremely precious and valuable to Him. He knows about your pain, He is the Great High Priest, who empathizes with you. The word empathizes means, “to feel the very feelings you feel.”
Despite what you go through, perhaps for some, you are unscathed by life – its sorrows, fears, and troubles; be thankful to God! For others, your sorrows seem to multiply and your friends, like ‘Job’s,’ give counsel that is crushing, cruel, critical, and compassion-less. Don’t respond with criticism, but be in prayer for them! God is for you. God loves you. God is with you in the storm. You are not alone. Should you find yourself in the place where through illness or otherwise, you are unable to read His Word, know the issue is not are you in the Word BUT His Word is in you! The years of reading, hearing, meditating upon His Word are not lost. God by His Spirit is able to bring back to your remembrance something you have read, when you need it! He is the One who reminds, refreshes us through His Word. His Word is in you. He will comfort you.
Be of good cheer, Jesus has overcome sin, death, the grave. He will meet you so that you can meet others in their time of need and fear, as His instrument of comfort.
- God comforts the crushed and in turn commissions them to comfort others in any affliction. – 2 Cor 1:3-4
- God comforts us with His Word. – Ps 119:50
- God refreshes His hurting one with His Word. – Ps 119:50
- God encourages His hurting one with His Word – Rom 15:4
- God personally imparts HIS COMFORT in times of your Affliction – 2 Cor 1:3
YOUR PAIN – OTHERS BENEFIT
Some other suffering soul, unexpectedly, does not know that even now, God, out of His kindness and loving and tender concern for them, is preparing a compassionate vessel fit for His use in their life, as an answer and comforter for them! It will come through your own pain and suffering; God’s comfort to you are your qualifications and credentials. God is using His Word to comfort you and one day, you too will be an instrument of comfort into the lives of someone who is crushed by sharing His Word in a compassionate way, and the Holy Spirit will take the Word and minister comfort into some soul who is afflicted, Your sorrows and afflictions have purpose, one being to experience comfort and refreshment yourself and also to come alongside others and impart comfort to them using His Word of comfort to the afflicted.
PRAY FOR THE AFFLICTED
Do you know anyone who is afflicted, under great pressures? STOP NOW- and Pray. Ask God to meet them with Himself and comfort them and refresh them in their time of pressure. He will meet you .so that you can meet others in their time of need, as His instrument of comfort.
In the words of the Hymnist perhaps this chorus sums our sojourn best:
“Some through the water, some through the flood
Some through the fire, but all through the blood…”
May the God of all comfort, comfort you and may you know He provides comfort through His Word…
- God’s Word is powerful.
- God’s Word imparts comfort, strengthens.
- God’s Word brings refreshing to the one who is afflicted!
- God’s Word is Personal to you in your pain.
Comfort for the crushed comes through the Scriptures, through “the God of all comfort!”
Read His Word, Think on it, Share it… and thank God He will recall it when you need it, once you take it in.
This is my comfort in my affliction, that Your Word has revived me. – Psalm 119:50