Monday, February 22, 2010

2 Corinthians 1:1-11 (Comfort and Contentment)

The teaching here at the beginning of this epistle is something that needs to be taught more in the church today. God is the God of comfort. It is the comfort we receive from Him in hard times that we can use to help others. Instead we seem to be a people who are always on the lookout for comfort from other sources. We look to other people, to material things, to escapist entertainment… everywhere other than simply relying on God.

Where does happiness and contentment come from? If you look at a westerner, they usually behave in a way that would show you that they think happiness come from stuff. (They would probably not tell you that, but that is what they believe.) Someone from an eastern culture would say that happiness comes from within, but that is not very satisfying either.

In both cases, happiness or contentment is not found in a problem free life. Just look at the richest westerner, or the most meditative easterner. Here we see that, even those who know God and receive their comfort from Him have moments in life when they need that comfort. It could be argued that it is the hard times in life, and the closeness to God we experience then, that bring true contentment.

Best of all, the experiences we have with God in the hard times of life are the ones we can use to help others. We pass the comfort we receive from God on and enrich other people’s lives as well. We can be used by the God of comfort to comfort those around us.

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