Whenever I go on a trip, whether long or short, I get anxiety. Anxiety about not being in my own bed, not knowing if I’ll remain healthy, not having a fan. (When did I get to be so high maintenance?!) I’m miles away and my comfort zone isn’t anywhere in sight.
As we came home from a weekend road trip, I felt I could breathe easier with every familiar exit we approached. As we waited at the red light across from the familiar view of Home Depot, joy rested upon my heart. Ahhh home. After unpacking, I sat on the couch next to my sleepy pup and sweet husband with coffee in hand and tablet on my lap. Finally, rest was so close I could almost grab it.
Comfort From the King
Why is our home a source of comfort to us? Well that’s an easy question to answer. We are familiar with it. We know where everything is. We could walk the halls in the dark of night and not trip or stub a toe. We know our way around.
I wonder if the bible is that kind of a comfort source for us? Are we familiar with it? Do we know where things are in it? Could we flip through the pages of Gods word in the midst of a dark season and not stumble over our circumstances? Do we know our way around this precious book?
When I was a new believer I dove right into reading the bible. God taught me a lot those first few months. It was overwhelming and awe inspiring. But I came to passages that really stumped me sometimes. Slavery in the bible? Kings with thousands of wives? Uhh…hurry turn the page! I was so uncomfortable with these realities and the like. Sometimes, I still am. It’s because I didn’t have the familiarity with the bible that was needed to view these circumstances and the context therein.
The bible is Gods inerrant word. It teaches us about his character and how he relates to his creation. The more we read it, the more we will understand God and this world. We will grow in our knowledge of his holiness and our sinfulness, his goodness and our unrighteousness.
My soul clings to the dust;
give me life according to your word!
When I told of my ways, you answered me;
teach me your statutes!
Make me understand the way of your precepts,
and I will meditate on your wondrous works.
My soul melts away for sorrow;
strengthen me according to your word!
Put false ways far from me
and graciously teach me your law!
I have chosen the way of faithfulness;
I set your rules before me.
I cling to your testimonies, O LORD;
let me not be put to shame!
I will run in the way of your commandments
when you enlarge my heart! (Psalm 119:25-32 ESV)
Psalm 119 is filled with praises to God about his perfect, life giving word. King David sought comfort in it and we should too.
The Author of Comfort
Whether you take comfort in your home, spouse, job etc., the truth remains, it will not last. Your house could catch fire or your company could implode. Clinging to anything other than the Lord will ultimately let us down, leaving us empty handed. Our God is the God of comfort and encouragement. (2 Corinthians 1:3, Romans 15:5) This means he is the author of it. We should cling to him and he will give us rest. Only he can cause our hearts to rejoice in all that life tosses our way. This amazing God we serve longs to speak to us through his word. We have his letters to us (his Children) at our fingertips and the Holy Spirit to give us understanding. When life gets uncomfortable, let’s run quickly to our Father rather than worldly things which wither like the grass.
I definitely haven’t arrived there yet. But I so want to! I want to be so familiar with Gods word that it becomes my first and foremost source of comfort. I want to flee to it during happiness and sorrow. When the weight of the world weighs heavily upon our hearts, comfort is near. Take hold of the Word and rest in him.
Remember your word to your servant, in which you have made me hope. This is my comfort in my affliction, that your promise gives my life. (Psalm 119:49-50 ESV)