“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 may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-7
As we face these unprecedented days before us, we at Doulos cannot help but think of these verses. As Paul was writing these words to the church at Corinth, he was specifically speaking to those afflictions that came alongside the persecution they were experiencing. Thankfully, many of us reading this blog today do not find ourselves at the hands of persecution like many of our church planters around the world. We do, however, find ourselves in a time of great affliction and discomfort as we live day to day with the impact of the coronavirus as it runs rampant around our world. Many of you may be feeling the loneliness that the season has brought with social distancing and quarantines. You may be experiencing fear or anxiety of the unknown of the days ahead. Some of you reading this may have a friend or loved one who is fighting the virus at this very moment. You are, in a word, uncomfortable at the very least. But have hope, for the great Comforter has come to bring us comfort.
As we come off of Easter weekend, we can more clearly than ever see the days we are living in light of the resurrection. We can see how God sent His one and only Son, Jesus, to cure us of our greatest affliction—sin. It is with this lens, that we can look toward the days ahead. Paul reminds us that we can find comfort in Him through “all of our afflictions.” There, as Paul says later in chapter 4, “Do not lose heart!” He reminds us that the afflictions and discomforts that we are currently experiencing may feel like they will last forever, but they will not. They are but momentary in light of the glory of eternity with Him.
This month, we want to challenge to you to pray for the days ahead in the following ways:
#1: That we may live our days in light of the truth of the resurrection.
#2: That as God comforts us, we may be comforters to others around us while sharing with them the good news of Jesus Christ.
#3: That our indigenous leaders around the world will feel, even at this very moment, the comfort that only our God can bring.
#4: That as the Lord allows doors to open, that our indigenous leaders will be able to spread the gospel without spreading, or getting, the disease.
#5: That we may see the end of the coronavirus come quickly and healing take place for those who are sick.