This is part 4 of a series recapping a recent women’s conference, Finding Purpose In The Pain. The previous posts are:
As time went on, I came to see that our loss opened the door to minister to a world we were never a part of before. I always knew I wasn’t invited into that world. I knew my words were not welcomed to those hearts. When you lose a child you really don’t want to get coping tips from people who haven’t been there.
Then I came across this verse and realized that with this tremendous loss came a tremendous responsibility.
All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us. We have plenty of hard times that come from following the Messiah, but no more so than the good times of his healing comfort—we get a full measure of that, too.
When we suffer for Jesus, it works out for your healing and salvation. If we are treated well, given a helping hand and encouraging word, that also works to your benefit, spurring you on, face forward, unflinching. Your hard times are also our hard times. When we see that you’re just as willing to endure the hard times as to enjoy the good times, we know you’re going to make it, no doubt about it.
We don’t want you in the dark, friends, about how hard it was when all this came down on us in Asia province. It was so bad we didn’t think we were going to make it. We felt like we’d been sent to death row, that it was all over for us. As it turned out, it was the best thing that could have happened. Instead of trusting in our own strength or wits to get out of it, we were forced to trust God totally—not a bad idea since he’s the God who raises the dead! And he did it, rescued us from certain doom. And he’ll do it again, rescuing us as many times as we need rescuing. You and your prayers are part of the rescue operation—I don’t want you in the dark about that either. I can see your faces even now, lifted in praise for God’s deliverance of us, a rescue in which your prayers played such a crucial part. From 2 Cor 1: 3-11
I can’t say that any better than the inspired Apostle Paul. Those words illuminated the purpose of my suffering.
- Comfort others with the comfort I have been given.
- Stop relying on myself.
- Trust the God who raises the dead
That’s what I’ve tried to do. I’ve tried to live that the best I can. Some days it is easier than others. For today, I love it that my son’s story has become so interwoven with my story. I love it that he is with me every day. I love it that his life and death are continuing to point people to the Savior.