– by Paul Nyamuda
Marriage was designed to be a place of giving and receiving comfort. Sadly, it’s often the source of unnecessary pain. One of the primary roles of the Holy Spirit is to comfort God’s people. In the marriage context the Holy Spirit wants to use you to comfort your spouse. Have you fully embraced this role? This word comforter is used by Jesus when speaking of the Holy Spirit.
In this passage alone, the word comfort is used 10 times:
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. Our hope for you is unshaken… you will also share in our comfort.” – 2 Cor. 1:3-7.
Strengthening by coming alongside
The word comfort here speaks of the ability to strengthen by coming alongside. It is help of the highest sorts. 1 Sam 12:24 says, “Then David comforted his wife Bathsheba, and he went to her and made love to her. She gave birth to a son, and they named him Solomon.”
Comfort results in security
Comfort results in security, which is part of your self-esteem. When you feel secure you have a deep sense that everything is going to be alright. The English word ‘secure’ comes from a Latin word ‘securus’ which means without care. In marriage, because you have each other, you can say “I don’t need to worry as long as you are here.” Sometimes when I give my wife a long hug she exhales, “This is home!” How do you feel when you are around each other? Is it your safe space? Sadly, for many couples the person they fear the most is their spouse. I was counselling a business leader who said to me “I am more afraid of my wife than a group of striking workers!” The war should be out there, not at home. But for many, home has become the battleground, the place of stress, and the place of pain and rejection. In the context of your marriage, you are a social architect; you create climate. What climate are you creating? Many of us are good at preparing to go to work, few are good at preparing to go back home. Many of us put our best foot forward when dealing with clients; we dress well and speak well, but if we are honest with ourselves we give our spouses our left overs; emotionally and intellectually.
Ask God for comfort
The Bible says in Romans 12:15 to “Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.” What is your spouse going through right now? What are they afraid of? What is making them feel unsettled and insecure? Is the enemy accusing them? Ask them and God these questions, then allow the Holy Spirit to comfort them through your words, listening ear, and touch.
JOY! Magazine (September 2017)