“As ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation” (2 Cor. 1:7).
“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 Cor. 1:4).
It must be somewhere in my grief that the help of the grief is hidden. It must be in some discovery of the divine side of the sorrow that the consolation of the sorrow will be found. It is a wondrous change when a man stops asking of his distress, “How can I throw this off?” and asks instead, “What did God mean by sending this?”—Phillips Brooks.
If you would to another heart a source of comfort be,
Skilled to administer true balm, and show real sympathy:
If you would dry another’s tears in deepest grief or woe,
O, marvel not then if today your own heart’s blood must flow!
If you would in life’s stress and strain, courage and strength impart
To those who ’neath life’s burden oft might droop with sinking heart—
You too must know the pressure keen, the spirit sorely tried,
Draw for yourself the strength from God that never is denied.
If you would tell the words of power to lives that well might tire
With suffering prolonged, that still God shares the “furness fire”—
O, you must prove then for yourself His pressure surely there,
But marvel not if trials keen today your soul must bear!
Would you equipped for service be, where’er your path may lie?
God has His training school on earth, learn here your calling high—
When pain or joy shall to you come, perceive His coming too
To train you even now for work He has for you to do.
Look rather to God’s end in afflicting than at the measure and degree of thy afflictions.-Unknown.
Resolved to improve afflictions to the utmost.—Jonathan Edwards.