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Read: 2 Corinthians 1:3-11Coming alongside

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, … who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble. – vv. 3-4

When my sister Carole was diagnosed with breast cancer, our family worried. That diagnosis, with its surgeries and treatments, caused us to fear for her well-being, which drove our family to prayer on her behalf. Over the ensuing months, Carole’s updates were honest about the challenges. But we all celebrated when the report came back that the surgery and treatments had been successful. Carole was on the road to recovery!

Then, less than a year later, my sister Linda faced the same battle. Immediately, Carole came alongside Linda, helping her understand what to expect and how to prepare for what she would face. Carole’s experience had equipped her to walk with Linda through her own trial.

This is what Paul calls for in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4, where we read, “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.”

Thankfully, the Lord doesn’t waste anything. Our struggles not only give us an opportunity to experience His comfort, but they also open the door for us to share that comfort with others in their struggles. – Bill Crowder

Today, how can I be an encouragement to others whose hearts are weighed down by the cares of life?

God’s presence brings us comfort; our presence brings others comfort.

 ©2017 ODB Ministries, 3000, Kraft Ave., SE, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49555-0001, USA. Used by permission. For this and other materials contact ODB Ministries at 322 P. Guevarra, San Juan City (Phils.); Tel.: 722-2010.

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