At some point in life, everyone will experience loss. If you live long enough, it is inevitable that someone you love dearly will slip away into eternity, and you will be left mourning, grieving, and enduring a trial you may not have been fully prepared for. But you will not be left to your own. Jesus will be your comfort:
"As we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too" (2 Cor. 1:5).
Christ walked the earth perfectly on our behalf, but the Scriptures remind us that He didn't walk it without hardship. The writer of Hebrews says,
"We do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin" (4:15).
Jesus was tempted for forty days by Satan (Mark 1:12–13). Isaiah, prophesying about the Lord, shares that Jesus, our perfect Savior, was despised and rejected by men; he was a man of sorrows and acquainted with much grief (Isa. 53:3). Jesus knows suffering. He understands the sorrows of mankind.
We know His greatest suffering occurred on the cross. In His final moments of life, Mark records him saying, "'Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?' which means, 'My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?'" (Mark 15:34). His pain and suffering was for a purpose—the redemption of the world. He endured great pain. Pain I can only imagine; pain and wrath on my behalf.
Jesus' pain and suffering were for a great purpose, and our pain and suffering serve a purpose as well. As Paul shares with the Corinthians, one of the many purposes of suffering is that through suffering, we can now comfort with the comfort we've received from our Lord.
If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer" (2 Cor. 1:6).
We share in Christ's sufferings for His sake. But we also receive comfort from Him through His Spirit and because of the gospel. Thankfully we have a Savior who relates to our suffering. Jesus is aware of and acquainted with our grief. He is acquainted with my grief and your grief. And He wants to comfort you today by letting you know you are not alone. He is with you, interceding even now.
How has the Lord used suffering to draw you closer to Him? Have you experienced this comfort the Lord promises through Jesus? If so how?