Friday, January 16, 2015

Comfort from God

Today I was reading in the Book of Psalms in the Bible. I have never actually read through the entire Old Testament (a goal I still want to achieve), but I found great comfort in the verses I read today from Psalm 18.

"I will love thee, O Lord, my strength."

"The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower."

"I will call upon the Lord who is worthy to be praised; so shall I be saved from mine enemies."

"The sorrows of death compassed me, and the floods of ungodly men made me afraid."

"The sorrows of hell compassed me about: the snares of death prevented me."

"In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple and my cry came before him, even into his ears" (Psalm 18:1-6, emphasis added).

I really loved the message of comfort and strength that these scriptures share. God can help us in so many ways.

He can be our rock to provide a solid foundation on which we can center our lives and build our families.

He can be our fortress to protect us and our families from evil influences of the world if we choose to stay with him. (After all, a fortress is no good to you if you're not inside it).

He can be our strength. When we feel like we have no energy, patience, or desire left, we can pray to him for the strength to continue. If we pray with real desire, he will increase our capacity to deal with our circumstances, even if our circumstances don't change.

We can trust him. If we're in a situation where we've been hurt by others or lied to, it's hard to trust those who have hurt us. But, it is a great comfort that we can always trust God. In the Bible it says that God "is the same, yesterday, today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8). He does not change, so we can trust and rely on him and the constancy of his love for us.

He is our high tower. In biblical times, fields were often guarded by men who stood in high towers because it gave them a greater perspective. They could warn others when they saw someone coming and be ready to protect the fields. In my life, there have been a lot of times where I feel stuck knee-deep in a mud puddle, overwhelmed with pressures of the world, family responsibilities, work, and the events of life. In these times, I try to remember that God has a broader, higher perspective of the purpose of my challenges and opportunities and where they will take me. Remembering that he knows more helps me have the courage to continue forward and have peace as I do.

I know that we can pray to the Lord in our distress. We don't have to be perfectly happy when we come to God in prayer. We can share our heartache, fears, sadness and frustration. He will always hear our voice and answer our prayers in his will and timing.

Whether you're a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a Catholic, a Jew, a Muslim or a member of another faith, you can find great comfort in God's words. Pick up whatever your religious text is with the intent to find comfort from God, and he will answer you.

I'd love to know what some scriptures are that have brought you great comfort. Share them in the comments below, and remember God loves you!

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