Somewhere, someone is hurting as the world around them revs up for the holiday festivities.
Someone is adjusting to life after a big transition.
Someone is struggling to pay bills.
Someone is grieving the loss of a loved one.
Someone is wrestling with fear or anxiety after an unexpected health diagnosis.
Someone is battling disease or struggling with pain management.
Someone is feeling rejected, lonely, forgotten, insignificant.
Someone doesn’t know how to tell their family they just lost their job, their home, their spouse, their unborn child.
We can add so many things to this list of circumstances causing someone to suffer.
You may know that someone who is hurting this Christmas.
You may even be that someone today.
If not, we can be sure that any one of us could be that someone tomorrow.
So, how can we find the comfort we need when Christmas comes with heartache?
“My comfort in suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life.” Psalm 119:50 (NIV)
As I prayed over this verse, I thought about the physical and emotional pain my family endured over the last year. Some of our heartaches and trials will roll over into the coming year.
Longing to gain a deeper perspective, I prayed over the psalmist’s declaration of faith, searched other translations, and found a spirit-refreshing nugget of hope that solidified my peace.
The New Living Translation says: “Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles.” Psalm 119:50 (NLT)
The English Standard Version says: “This is my comfort in my affliction, that your promise gives me life.” Psalm 119:50 (ESV)
The International Standard Version says: “This is what comforts me in my troubles; that what you say revives me.” Psalm 119:50 (ISV)
The Word English Bible says: “This is my comfort in my affliction, for your word has revived me.” Psalm 119:50 (WEB)
God’s promise is what He says . . . His Word!
God’s promise revives ̶ renews, restores back to life, makes operative again, brings back ̶ my life.
God’s promise preserves ̶ keeps alive, makes lasting, keeps safe, protects, maintains ̶ my life.
God’s promise assures us that He loves us and never leaves us.
His love is unconditional, “absolute, free from imperfection, pure, complete, without limits” (Dictionary .com).
His presence is unrelenting, “not yielding or swerving in determination, not easing or slackening” (Dictionary .com).
God alone is able and available to handle anything and everything that happens to land on our list of afflictions.
Even while we are right smack in the middle of heart wrenching circumstances, we can trust God to be our strength, our peace, our enduring hope, and our constant and complete Giver of comfort.
God of All Comfort, thanks for using Your Holy Word to reveal Your unchanging character, Your unconditional love for us, and Your unrelenting presence with us. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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