There is purpose in pain: to eventually become the one that God uses to comfort others.  Both comfort and affliction are meant to be shared within the Body of Christ, not lived out in isolation.  

I believe Pastor Harry couched it appropriately in his sermon this past Sunday when he said, and I paraphrase (hopefully in a correct way), that understanding pain has purpose is the sign of a spiritually mature Christ-follower.  As I listened, several questions entered my mind: 

How does God use the problems in our lives to bring us closer to Him?  How different is our prayer life during difficult times?  God could intervene and keep us from encountering trouble but would we be shaped into what God wants us to be without the suffering? 

Many times, we don’t realize that God is all we need until we recognize that God is all we have.  Paul felt this way in 2 Corinthians 1 (NIV), We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.”

God intends to use for good the trouble we encounter.  Romans 8:28 (NLT) explains how this works: And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”

We are called to be comforters, just as Christ sent the Holy Spirit as the Great Comforter to all believers.  As I watched prayer teams at the back of the warehouse at the end of the service, I saw people giving solace through prayer to those needing comfort.  This is one of the Spiritual gifts given to many faithful Christ-followers at Mosaic.  Indeed, there is purpose behind the pain, both for those in need of comfort and those that are the comforters, allowing the Great Comforter to shine through them.

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