the crucible of suffering
“I will not leave you comfortless…”
Nowhere has God promised anyone, even His children, immunity from sorrow, suffering, and pain. This world is a “vale of tears,” and disappointment and heartache are as inevitable as clouds and shadows. Suffering is often the vessel in which our faith is tested. Those who successfully come through the “furnace of affliction” are the ones who emerge “like gold tried in the fire.”
The Bible teaches unmistakably that we can triumph over bereavement. The Psalmist said, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning” (Psalm 30:5).
Self-pity can bring no enduring comfort. This fact is, it will only add to our misery. And unceasing grief will give us little consolation in itself, for grief begets grief. Ceaseless grieving will only magnify our sorrow. We should not peddle our sorrows and bewail our bad fortune—that will only depress others. Sorrow, or mourning, when it is borne in a Christian way, contains a built-in comfort. “Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted” (Matthew 5:4).
There is comfort in mourning because we know that Christ is with us. He has said, “Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world” (Matthew 28:20). Suffering is endurable if we do not have to bear it alone; and the more compassionate the Presence, the less acute the pain.
(based on adaptation)