Friday, December 08, 2023

You are not alone; Jesus eases holiday pain

by PASTOR HOLLIS STEWART/Guest Contributor
| November 10, 2023 1:00 AM

The holidays are full of joy for most people. For others, they are reminders of painful times, such as the loss of a loved one. Those who are suffering ask: “How should I handle this? What can I do to ease the pain?”

What I will share now is what works for me: I claim the freedom that Christ promised me. I seek God's comfort for all my suffering in the Bible.

For pain at this time of year, Matthew 5:3-12 helps me the most. In this scripture, Jesus strengthens us with a number of messages:

• Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 

• Blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted. 

• Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.

• Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

• Blessed are the merciful for they will be shown mercy. 

• Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 

• Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

• Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 

• Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Yes, I know it seems impossible, but seek God in all things and I promise you that you'll find a peace you've never known.

You may ask: “How does this pastor know this?” I buried two sons and a wife before I was ready. When I turned the pain in my life over to Jesus, I found a peace I cannot put into words. This peace awaits you when you turn your life over to God.

Pastor Hollis Stewart ministers at The Living Word Church in Sandpoint.

Recent Headlines