We made it to the end of the month – but things aren’t completely finished here! We’ll wrap up for good on November 1st, and before we do I have two guest posts to share with you. The first post is by my sister Heather Way, and the second by the artist you’ve seen each Saturday, Ramone Romero. These two guest posts have been in my possession since before the series began, but I’ve saved them until now because they each touch on something that I really wanted to introduce last.
Heather and Ramone both write about mourning with and for others. Heather writes about mourning with people near to her, right in her very own home, and Ramone writes about mourning with strangers on the other side of the globe. Three verses come to mind as I share their words with you:
Rejoice with those who rejoice, and mourn with those who mourn. (Some translations say weep with those who weep.)
Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
(He) 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.
2 Corinthians 1:4
In this series we’ve looked again and again at Matthew 5:4, “Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted.” I want to emphasize as we move into these next two posts that comfort means to come along beside and be in the very presence of, and that this is what Jesus does for you because he loves you. Then, we do it for others, because he loves them.
It’s like this: we’re afflicted, we receive comfort – we see someone else afflicted, we share with them some of the comfort we ourselves have been given. The comfort doesn’t originate in us but as it is now a part of who we are, we give of ourselves the way God in Christ gave himself to us. We do the leg work. We show up and come alongside somebody else. This is a duty, a command for us in Jesus.
I don’t believe Jesus comforts us strictly so that we will do x, y, z for somebody else. (He’s too loving for that, too big and all encompassing for that.) But the nature of comfort, like the nature of love, is to grow and spread. Love someone and they will become loving. Comfort someone and they will become comforters. Comfort grow and grows, and the more we give away, the more comforted we are ourselves. It’s the cycle of the Kingdom.
So show up.
This post is part of Survivor Songs, a 31-Day series. A full list of posts is found here.