Beyond “Being There”
Bible Reading: 2 Corinthians 1:3-7
When others are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. 2 Corinthians 1:4
When Cady came home from school, she immediately ran up to her room, flopped down on the bed, and burst into tears. Michelle had just told her she was moving away, and Cady’s heart broke at the thought that she wouldn’t see her best friend again.
Before long, Cady heard a soft knock. She lifted her head to see her big sister, Darby, standing at the door.
“What is it, sweetie?” Darby asked, as she came and put her arms around her. Cady just sobbed in her sister’s arms and told her all about Michelle’s news.
“I’m so sad for you,” Darby said. “You and Michelle have so much fun together.”
Cady wiped her tears and nodded. “She’s my best friend,” she said. “We tell each other everything.”
“I’m sorry,” Darby said as she hugged Cady again. “I’m sorry you have to go through this. It hurts me to know that you’re hurting. I love you, and I’m here for you whenever you want to talk.”
Do you know someone who has experienced a loss like Cady’s? Maybe someone you know has lost a pet, faced a tough move, or even had a family member who died. Or it could be that you’ve experienced a loss yourself. It can really be hard.
Cady was fortunate to have someone in her life who understood that her greatest need at that painful moment was comfort. That sounds obvious, but comfort might not be what you think it is.
Comfort is not a “pep talk” urging you to hang in there, tough it out, or hold it together. It’s not an explanation of why bad things happen or an attempt to convince you that you shouldn’t be sad. It isn’t even a bunch of positive words about God being in control or a promise that everything will be okay. In time all those things can be helpful, but they don’t fill our pressing need for comfort.
One way God shares his comfort is through people. You receive comfort when you know you aren’t suffering alone—when people feel sad with you and tell you they hurt with you. Paul said, “When others are happy, be happy with them. If they are sad, share their sorrow” (Romans 12:15).
When people you love are hurting, be a friend who comforts. Be with them in their time of hurt, and let them know that you hurt with them. And when you need comfort, it’s okay to ask for it. It’s how God wants to heal you when you hurt.
TALK: What does true comfort look like? What does comfort sound like?
PRAY: Ask God to help you show this kind of comfort to your family members and friends when they hurt.
ACT: Go show comfort to a hurting friend.