What is Comfort?

What does comfort mean to you? Sometimes we use the term to define an ideal of some sort. For example, when someone asks how much money is enough and we answer, “enough to be comfortable.” 

Where do you seek comfort when you face tragedy or disappointment? There are many examples throughout the Bible of men and women who have been able to find comfort in the midst of pain and tribulation. These stories can be helpful for us. 

Psalm 13 is probably one of the darker psalms written by King David. It begins, “How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day?” I admit that I have cried these words in my life, I think we all have. David was at a point where he felt God was absent. 

Have you reached the point where you expect comfort to mean God solving your problems rather than walking with you through them? When tragedy befalls you and you don’t see God intervening you wonder where He is. You are not alone. We need to get back to the meaning of comfort in these moments. 

The word comfort is from the Latin and combines com, which means together and fortis, which means strength. So, comfort was originally together strength. This evolved into the word confortarewhich came to mean, “strengthen much.” Then we arrive at the 17thcentury and the word represents physical ease. And today we hear comfort and immediately think of fluffy blankets and junk food. We went from ‘together-strength’ to ‘pain-barrier.’

God will never leave us or forsake us. With God we can be together-strong.Jesus reminds us that we will face tribulation in John 16:33, and these troubles are nothing new. If you find yourself questioning God, answer this question: how are you looking to experience His company? We must not forget the second part of the verse from John. Jesus ends with the encouragement that we can take heart He has overcome the world. 

That should give us real comfort.