2 Corinthians 1:3-4 – 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. (ESV)
As I walked in the centre of town on a cold day in springtime, I was momentarily warmed and caressed by a body of air as it moved with me down the street. It was issuing forth from a large department store entrance.
The manner of its warmth was accompanied by a nudge in my spirit. It was a reminder of how God travels with me through all things. He wants to accompany us and comfort us as we travail in the coldness of grief and sorrow. It was as if, for a moment, God was moving with me down the street — like a father caressing the head of a loved child and holding their hand to help them through a testing trial.
Sadly, there are no shortcuts through grief and sorrow. It is just something that we have to plough through in faith, knowing that in due time, its doggedness will become attenuated to be given its proper place in our lives. Even if there is a massive space left behind by the loved one now departed, God's love and compassion is willing to reside there, too, if we are willing.
So I am thankful, but as a son, I miss parents and the space they leave. So, in this small episode, I believe that God wanted me to be aware of His favour and blessing for today, and not be intimidated or overwhelmed, or to focus on what has passed, or the manner of their passing, but to step back from the edge of darkness and to look forward to the future.
If you, like me, are missing a loved one today, let us all rest in the knowledge that God is for us, for that is why we are created, to be in relationship with Him. So in our sorrow, let us be open to His loving kindness, and do not hold out against it, because He will walk with us through the darkness.
Prayer: Lord, we thank You for the certainty of Your loving-kindness that is for all those who bow the knee before Your throne. Thank You for Jesus' suffering that takes our place at the cross and gives You the right to say, "I am with you always!" — even through dark times when we feel alone. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
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Listen while you read: "Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam" (Lyrics)