There are some really sad stories in this life. There always have been, and there always will be until Jesus comes back to this earth and puts an end to sin and suffering once and for all. I long for that day.
As a nurse for many years, I have seen and heard a lot of painful stories. Presently, I work with an adult developmentally disabled population. Some are profoundly intellectually disabled. Some have never spoken in their lives. Some are physically abusive to themselves all day, every day, for decades and decades. Most of the individuals I serve are elderly. Some of them have spent their entire lives in an institution. Some that I know of have been physically or sexually abused by others at some point in their lives. I’ve heard of horrific stories and realities in different lives. We can’t listen to the news and not see or hear terrible real-life stories all around us. Why God? This is the question of some. Many wonder why their lives are so unfair… so hard. So much pain.
We know that because of sin and Satan, this life is full of misery. But is it possible that those of us who are Christians, who haven’t experienced these types of horrors, have forgotten to share with the world not only that God is love, but that we have a sympathizing Savior who understands us because He, too, suffered? Jesus understands trauma. He understands abandonment. He understands abuse. He understands betrayal. He is near to the brokenhearted because He truly understands and can identify with all of it.
Imagine being with a group of men whom you disciple for three years, who witnessed many miracles. Their lives were changed by the power of the Holy Spirit through their daily walk with Jesus Christ. God in the flesh dwelt with them up close and personal. Then, in His most desperate need of support and prayer, His disciples forsook Him and fled (Mark 14:50). That is real abandonment. Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss (Luke 22:48) and turned Him over to His enemies—the ultimate betrayal. Jesus experienced physical abuse (Mark 15:19). He was “...despised and rejected… a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief...” (Isaiah 53:3). He carried the weight of sin, despising the shame—all for us (Hebrews 12:2). Jesus, who knew no sin, became sin for us, “...so that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21). Jesus Christ took what we deserve so that we could experience what we don’t deserve. Justification. Salvation. A clean slate. Eternity with Him. What a blessed hope!
Hebrews 4:14-16 says, “Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” This is our ticket out of all the horrors of this life. No matter how bad the situation, because Jesus, too, went through suffering and pain, He identifies with us, understands it, and still offers us the privilege of coming BOLDLY to Him in prayer to find help when we need it most. This gives me so much encouragement.
Call to Action
Jesus tells us to come to Him when we are burdened and heavy laden, and He will give us rest (Matthew 11:28). He tells us to cast our cares on Him because He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7).
We have a sympathizing Savior. Come to Him today. He truly cares for you.
All scripture taken from the King James Version.