Bring your questions and your grief to him. Your doubts and confusion. Your weariness and loneliness. Amazingly, God himself gives us words in Scripture to do just that. Ask him that the comfort of Christ might be given to you just as you are sharing in Christ’s sufferings (2 Cor 1:5). And if it takes too much energy to form words right now, know that the Spirit himself is interceding for you “with groanings too deep for words” (Rom 8:26).
My dear friend,
My heart breaks for you regarding the burden you shared with me last evening. I have known you for a long time and have witnessed how you have persevered through many trials. But this one—oh, how deeply grievous it is. I know your head is spinning and your emotions are all over the place. Surprise, grief, fear, confusion, anger, doubt—and yes, shaky hope, were all intermingled as you poured out your heart to me. I was thankful for the opportunity to pray with you briefly, but I wanted to follow up today with a few words that I hope God might use to bring comfort and lift your weary head just a bit. (I realize that silence and simple presence are often the best gifts to offer someone in the midst of suffering, but I know you well enough to take the risk of saying more!)
I think what I want to communicate most is that you’re not alone. Jesus, the Suffering Servant, walked a path of grief and anguish ahead of you and for you. And now, he is with you by his Spirit. We often think of Jesus’ suffering primarily in the context of his crucifixion and death. This is true, but in another sense, the whole of Jesus’ life comprised suffering. Paul captures this in Philippians 2:5–8. The incarnation itself was a down escalator to the basement of fallen human misery. Jesus suffered his entire life by setting aside his glory and rightful splendor. He faced the toils and trials and heartaches every human being faces in a broken and sin-laden world.
What does this mean for you and for me?