Jesus Is Comfort
Do you think it’s possible to be drained, worn out, and exhausted yet somehow not depleted? Is it possible to be completely emptied yet somehow filled to overflowing?
Tonight that is how I feel. After a long week of the most incredible but draining work I came home and had a minor meltdown. With tears of exhaustion, I wondered, ‘What do you do when you have poured yourself out as an offering, drained every last droplet of physical, mental, and emotional strength in the doing of what God has given you to do?’ After a small cry, a hot bath, a cup of tea and a piece of fudge (Thank you Mona!) I picked up my Bible. As I read my Life Journal reading late into the night, the voice of God answered my unspoken question with an unexpected response: “You lay down to rest, Child, wake up tomorrow and do it all over again.”
Really? Oh yes. Really!
When God speaks, He speaks the truth.
He nailed me. Before I could squirm away. In those words I was reminded of who I really am.
I am a prisoner of Christ.
My life is not my own.
I’ve given it all to Him.
And even though it might be a totally crazy thing to do, I won’t be taking it back.
Even in moments when I want to.
Because I am gaining more than I am giving. So. Much. More.
Somehow when I give it all to Him, I’m battered and worn out, but full. No, not just “full”, but FULL!
And even more than full… fulfilled.
Friends of God, I am convinced we are not called to be comfortable. We are called to serve the Comforter. There is an entire world of difference between the two. If this is sounding a bit radical, surely that’s because it is!
The King of Heaven and earth has not called us to live measured, secure, safe or comfortable days of precision. He has called us to live messy, passionate, fulfilled, fruitful, courageous days of promise!
Several times in the book of Philemon Paul confesses who he really is in a way that reminds us who we really are too. Philemon is a letter to another brother in Christ who happens to be the owner of Onesimus, a Roman slave. Paul writes this letter to Philemon while literally being held under house arrest, a prisoner, not free to go and do as he would like. But he does not refer to himself as a prisoner of Rome, though that is how things stand. Because that’s not all there is to it.
No, Paul is a prisoner of Christ.
Paul is concerned for his friend, Onesimus. He must go back and make it right with the one who “owns” him. But something has changed since he ran away. He has become a disciple of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, the One who changes everything. Now Onesimus is not just a slave to Philemon, he is a slave to Christ. And Christ followers do weird and crazy things sometimes. Like voluntarily going back to the slave master you ran away from. Philemon has legal authority over his life. Onesimus’ life is not his own.
But neither is mine.
And neither is yours, I’m sorry to say.
If you’ve given your life to Christ, it’s hidden in Him.
But surely, there’s no better place for our lives to be found… than poured out to make His name famous.
So tomorrow, when I wake up, I’m going to give it all I’ve got again. And the next day. And the next. Because there are people who need to know who Jesus is; who need the Comforter way more than I need my comfort.