On Two Fronts

I am severely afflicted; give me life, O LORD, according to your word.  Psalm 119:107

The worst kind of affliction is the kind that impacts a person in their external and internal world.  I was reading earlier this morning about the great suffering currently playing out in Yemen.  War torn for the past two years, there is now mass starvation.  The spread of cholera is out of control.  People there have watched their world collapse.  They’re grieving great losses of family members, security, and a place they once called home.  Their affliction is crippling without Christ and the Gospel.

What about the person today who suffers internally but gives no hint that their soul is in torment?  Their external world looks fine yet their heart is breaking.  Many pass us every day in their cars, in the grocery store, in the halls of our workplace, and while they smile and sip their coffee, they are really wondering how they will make one more day.  Not all who suffer do so on both fronts.

Those whose worlds have visibly collapsed have a chance of someone extending help to them.  Right now, the world is beginning to respond with medical aid and food to Yemen. Children, the most vulnerable to malnutrition and disease, are being treated in make-shift hospitals.  With such widespread need, it’s easy for those with missions of mercy to plug in their gifts.  But what about the person who needs comfort today but shows no indication of a broken heart?

Is it you?   You may have shared your pain with others and it went badly.  Perhaps it was minimized and you swore you’d never open up again.  You realized that, horizontally, it can be difficult to get a sympathetic audience.  King David gives us the primary answer to our dilemma.  God is the only one who has compassion on those who have never experienced compassion.  His Word speaks life on many healing levels.

    1. The Word validates pain.

2. The Word gives more insight about our pain than we currently possess.

3. The Word offers a strategic diagnosis of what is wrong.

4. Jesus, often, outlines a way out of the pit.  By obeying, we are delivered.

5. When asked to suffer a season of affliction, Jesus offers Himself as our companion.

6. We are never left without someone to pray for us.  Jesus, Himself, intercedes for us right now in heaven.

7. We have the Word to read out loud over our situation.  By faith, we can speak it over our disbelief and failing faith.

David knew affliction from without and within.  I don’t know if he was suffering both when he wrote these words.  What is certain is that he knew where life came from.  To survive his ordeal, he knew he needed to live in the Word and make God his home.

There have been times your Word is all I have.  It has been more than enough it has saved me.  Amen

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