Friday, December 22, 2017

Advent 2017 # 22: The Savior Who Understands

Flu's been going around our office. More accurately, it's a flu-like viral illness that makes you feel terrible, with a cough that sounds like you're hacking up your lung. I don't want to catch it.

This morning, I awakened at a ridiculous hour with sneezing and a stuffy nose. "Aww, Lord. I don't want to be sick at Christmas," I whined as I sneezed a few more times.

I couldn't get back to sleep, so I decided to start the day early, and opened my Bible to Isaiah 53. I've literally read this passage every year for more than 20 years, but I didn't know it as well as I thought.

"A man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief...Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried..." Isaiah 53:3,4 nasb

The word translated as "sorrows" actually means pains; the word translated as "grief" actually means disease or sickness.

Jesus carried our pain and sickness when He went to the cross. Long before we had the first twinge of discomfort or the first shiver of fever, Jesus already knew it, had already carried it. 

Nor even the sickness that seems too much to bear is new territory for Jesus. Neither flu, cancer, heart disease, Celiac sprue, or crazy middle-of-the night sneezing, is new to Him. He knows about it all. He's carried it. He's experienced it.

I can't understand this mystery, but my failure of comprehension doesn't make it any less real. 

He knows about feeling tired and sick, but having to keep going anyway. 

He knows about being so ill the doctors expect you die, and about the agonizing struggle to recover afterward. 

He knows about pain and feeling like you'll never be comfortable again.

He knows about seeing someone you love suffer as disease robs them of vitality and life.

No matter what we face, we can take heart in this: Jesus understands and He cares. We don't go through our trials alone. He's been there before and He's right there with us again.

"Casting all your cares on Him, because He cares for you." 1 Peter 5:7
ps - I don't have the dreaded flu-like illness, just acute allergies. All is well. 

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In case you missed yesterday's post, here's the link:#21: When Persecution Hits a Little Too Close to Home 

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