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July 24, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; and you will be comforted over Jerusalem.”—Isaiah 66:13 (NIV)
There’s nothing like the soft, gentle stroke of a mother’s hand across her child’s forehead as they lie in their bed tired or sick, heartbroken or confused. Whether it’s her listening ear as I rant about my frustrations, her wise words in the midst of a confusing situation, or her warm embrace as tears stream down my face, my mother has always been a steadfast rock in my life. Being 17 years old and preparing to go away to college, I cherish the small moments that made me who I am today. With less than 10 days left until graduation, I owe most of my success and survival to my mom’s comfort and support during the difficult times!
In today’s Scripture, we see God promise the same motherly comfort to His people! In the midst of an inauthentic Jewish community, the Lord reassures His genuine followers they will be comforted in their efforts, but what does that comfort look like? If we read the verses that surround Isaiah 66:13, we see the comfort of God often comes in the form of His incomprehensible peace and joy. Something that can easily be overlooked, though, is the promise of God’s presence. Just like a mother carrying her baby brings the child a sense of comfort and security, so does the Lord’s presence with us!
When God promises us comfort, He does not promise a life of ease nor the elimination of difficulties. Being a Christ-follower actually entails quite the contrary. Because we live in a broken and sinful world, we are bound to encounter many difficulties; however, we can endure all trials because our Father gives us hope, provides us peace, and supplies us strength. Above all, though, He promises to be with us (Immanuel).
When we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, Immanuel (Psalms 23:4). When we mourn over our own sin in repentance, Immanuel (Matthew 5:4). When the suffering of this world overwhelms you, Immanuel (John 16:33). When you feel hopeless in the midst of trials and tribulations, Immanuel (2 Corinthians 1:3-5). Similar to how the presence of a mother provides inconceivable comfort to a child, I pray that the presence of our Creator, our heavenly Father, our Immanuel, would comfort us just the same.
Thank you, Mom, for always pointing me to God’s unchanging grace, never ending love, and unfailing comfort through your very reflection of Him. Thank you, God, for the unique aspect of your image that mothers hold and share with their children, and thank you that despite our imperfections, you still comfort us “as a mother comforts her child.”
DIG: Reflect on a time where the Lord comforted you. Could you feel His presence and peace?
DISCOVER: How can we be assured of God’s presence with us when we cannot see or feel Him physically? Check out John 16:13-15, Romans 8:26, and 1 Corinthians 3:16.
DO: Spend a few minutes alone with the Lord today away from all distractions. Ask Him to meet you right where you are and allow His Spirit to comfort you and speak to you.
Samy Rodriguez has been serving with the Calvary writing team since 2020 as a senior at Calvary Christian Academy. Before going to study communications, biblical studies, and intercultural studies at Palm Beach Atlantic University, she interned with the Calvary Communications Team and was a student leader in HSM (High School Ministry). She is passionate about communicating God’s Word and looks forward to continuing to serve in ministry after college.