“Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the Lord’s hand double for all her sins. The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.” Isaiah 40:1-3
We live in a broken world, broken by sickness, war, pride, poverty, hurt, and sorrow—broken by sin. Yet God, the God against whom our sin has been perpetrated and who has every right as the Creator of the universe to obliterate our very existence from the planet, stoops into our brokenness with His love.
That is the very thing we celebrate at Christmas, the comfort of God in our dark, all-encompassing sorrow by the gift and sacrifice of His own Son, Jesus—The Messiah. Do you remember the comfort of His touch? Do you remember the hope of the words, “Your iniquity is pardoned”? Have you known that touch?
Have you known that touch in heartache or in loss? He is the God not only of salvation (which is, in a sense, the first great comfort) but also the God of all comfort.
“Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.” (2 Corinthians 1:3,4)
Once we have known His comfort, He does not want us to keep it to ourselves. He wants us to share that comfort with those around us. To extend to them the grace that He has extended to us and the love with which He has loved us.
As we approach Christmas this year, let’s be watching. Let’s be asking, how can I comfort the people around me? And if you are in need of that comforting touch, I invite you to seek it out. He offers it freely. Join me here as we take a few quiet moments to reflect on Jesus, the Messiah, the God of all comforts. Let this Christmas be one of coming to know God in a new way as we learn of His comfort and extend it to those around us.
[This year, I’m doing something I’ve never done before, completely unplanned. I’m going through Handel’s Messiah and meditating on the Scripture used there. For accountability’s sake, I’ll be sharing it here and on Facebook. If you’d like to join me for this series and other updates, simply fill out the form below.]