Jul 17, 2020
|From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Q: I am caring for my elderly parents and I’m finding it difficult to stay strong, but I want to be faithful to them and comfort them in their sorrow and pain because they spent their lives reaching out to others. How can I bolster my strength in times of weariness? – P.C.
A: The Bible is filled with passages about comforting others and it is a ministry that God certainly blesses. Caring for the elderly is Biblical, particularly caring for one’s aged parents. “Let… Your merciful kindness be for my comfort” (Psalm 119:76).
It is an undeniable fact that usually those who have suffered most are best able to comfort others who are passing through suffering. They know what it is to suffer, and they understand more than others what a suffering person is experiencing – physically, emotionally, and spiritually. They are able to empathize as well as sympathize with the afflictions of others because of what they have experienced in their own lives. When we are a comfort and encouragement to others, we often experience comfort coming back to us many times over. God blesses those who comfort others and Scripture commands us to carry one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2).
Our sufferings may be rough and hard to bear, but they teach us lessons that in turn equip and enable us to help others. Our attitude toward suffering should not be, “Grit your teeth and bear it,” hoping it will pass as quickly as possible. Rather, our goal should be to learn all we can from what we are called upon to endure, so that we in turn can “comfort each other and edify one another; just as you also are doing” (1 Thessalonians 5:11).
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)
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