Comfort in Times of Trouble
might have hope”.
· Every one o f us experience seasons o f pressure, di fficulty, pain – no one is exempt.
· Possible sources:
Marriag e Financial setbacks Conflicts Severe sickness
Family Criticism Disappointments Redundancy
Broken friendships Injustice Betrayals Opposition
· Jn 16:33 “In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world”.
2. Why We Need Comfort
(i) Hurt feelings affect our thinking and cause us to lose perspective.
· When you are in pain you don’t think straight and tend to isolate (Prov.18:1)
(ii) Our own sinful nature leads us to isolate and find com fort in unhealthy ways.
- Alcohol, drugs, entertainment, relationships, pornography, distractions e.g. Gen.27:42 and 2 Sam. 4:1
(iii) Satan actively seeks to isolate us during painful seasons o f our life.
- He wants to separate us from a loving God and loving people.
- He wants to torment us with loss of hope, depression, loss of value, loneliness.
· Prov. 18:1 “A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire, he rages against all wise judgement.”
3. God’s Nature is to Comfort Us
· 2 Cor. 1:3-4 “…the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulations, that we might be able to comfort t hose who are in
any trouble with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”
(a) T he Nature o f God – what He is like!
· Father of Mercies – NT 3268 to have a deep compassion for those su ffering.
· God of all comfo rt – NT 3874 to come alongside to bring comfort, consolation, understanding.
· Whatever pain ful or distressing situation we face God express es His compassion by coming alongside us to comfort and strengthen us.
· God’s nature is to come alongside not to abandon (Heb.13:5 “I will never leave you”.
· God has tender feelings towards us – He is attentive to our trouble and distress.
(b) T he Actions of God – what He Does!
· God is willing to comfort us in all our painful situations.
· God wants us to experience the reality of His comfo rt personally.
· God intends us to be a source of His com fort to others in pain or trouble.
· Painful experi ences are used by God to deepen our faith and prep are us to serve others.
· Jn.14:16 “I will pray to the Father and He will give you another (of the same kind) comforter that He may abide with you forever, the Spirit of Truth.”
4. T he Comfort of the Scriptures
· Rom. 15:4 “For whatever things were written before were written fo r our learning, that we through patience and com fort o f the Scriptures might have
· Other people in history have experienced pressures, difficulties, pain and opposition. (1 Cor.10:13)
· God’s Word has Recorded their Experiences with God for our Benefit
(i) Learn from the experience o f others what God is like.
(ii) Look at life from God’s perspective and change thinking.
- May not be able to change our circumstances but we can change how we think and respond.
(iii) Experience the pres ence and com fort o f God through His Word.
(iv) Overcom e despair and look ahead with fresh hope – anticipate with pleasure or
- How Does T his Happen?
(i) Receiving com fort from the Scriptures.
(ii) Exercising patience – your choice how you will behave.
- Continue to walk with God
- Persevere in doing what is right.
- Exercise faith in God that He will keep His Word.
5. Practical Application
How to receive com fo rt from the Scriptures:
(i) Use Scripture Vers es you already know
(i.e. Heb 4:12 “God’s Word is living and powerful”)
- Read the verse aloud Examples
- Personalise the verses Is.40:27-31
- Speak it aloud - repeat (Eph..6:17) Is.41:10
- Picture it as you speak it Is.43:1-4
- Embrace its truth into your heart Ps.34:17-19 Ps 23
(ii) Expect the Holy Spirit to „quicken’ a Scripture
(Jer. 15:16 “Your Words were found and I ate them …”
- Ask Holy Spirit to speak to you.
- Read the Bible with expectation. E.g. Psalms, Proverbs
- Does any verse “stand out”, draw attention?
- Speak it aloud over your life (as abov e).
- Keep looking if nothing immediately apparent.