Friday, April 3

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 Praise be to the God and Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

No Pain – No Gain

Rick Warren, well-known internationally for his inspiring book, The Purpose-Driven Life, is also quoted for the poignant insight: “Your most effective ministry will come out of your deepest hurt.”

About two years ago his 27-year-old son could no longer cope with his debilitating depression and ended his life. As the news spread, 10,000 people contacted Rev. Rick Warren regarding personal struggles with depression. This resulted in a special church ministry for mental health.

During this Lenten season, as we reflect on the intense suffering of our Savior Jesus Christ, could we say His most effective ministry followed His excruciating pain on the Cross of Calvary? Yes, a thousand times over. When Jesus Christ cried, “It is finished,” the huge curtain in the temple was torn in two – giving us access to the very presence of God. He paid the debt for the sins of the world – past, present, and future.

He now sits at the right hand of the Throne of the Father, interceding for us. And when Christ returned to the Father, God sent the Holy Spirit to dwell in us, to counsel and guide us. The greatest gift of all is eternal life for all who believe in Him (John 3:16).

So let us now waste our pain. Instead, allow the Holy Spirit to comfort us, so that we can comfort others in their troubles.

Ruth E. Shira

Prayer: Thank you, Heavenly Father, for the many times you have comforted us in our afflictions. Help us to share that comfort with fellow travelers throughout our journey on the earth. Amen.