2 Cor.1:3-7 – Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. But if we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; or if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer; and our hope for you is firmly grounded, knowing that as you are sharers of our sufferings, so also you are sharers of our comfort.
Paul was able to get by all of his trials and afflictions by the revelation he received from the Lord. He experienced imprisonments, betrayals, beatings, stoning, and even a shipwreck or two. The Lord told Paul that His “grace was sufficient” to get through all of the resistance that he faced. Make sure you read today’s passage carefully because in it you see a very important key to effective ministry. Paul said that his comfort was proportional to the afflictions he endured. He also said that he was enabled to help others in their afflictions because of the comfort he had received. Obviously he could relate to people who were hurting because of the things he had gone through. Maybe there is more to it than that. Maybe Paul actually received an impartation of comfort from the Comforter Himself that he was able to impart to others. That is actually a very important key in ministry, receiving from the Lord through the difficulties of life empowers us to effectively minister to others. In today’s passage Paul uses a form of the word comfort (paraklesis) ten times. Here is the definition of that word from Loew and Nida’s wordbook.
Paraklesis – to cause someone to be encouraged or consoled,
Many of us have gone through stuff in the past. Maybe you went through the aftermath of Katrina in New Orleans and were met by God at various times. If so, that is still available for you to draw from as we minister to folks in today’s current crisis. The God of all comfort has comforted you in affliction that you maybe able to comfort others now.