When you have reached a spiritual maturity in times of distress or difficulty, what you have learned can be used to comfort others. You have a connection through your common experience. 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 says, “Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.”
Even if you do not have all the answers for someone who is hurting, you can be a comfort just by listening to them. People need to know someone has gone through what they have gone through, and they need that safe shoulder to cry on or to bare their soul to. They don’t want someone who isn’t familiar with their situation to give them advice and tell them what to do. You can be that person who just listens and lets them unburden their soul.
Hopefully when you first got sick or disabled, you had someone to help comfort you, although a lot of people don’t get that help. God needs more people who are willing to serve as comforters. You can be that person for someone who is hurting. It not only helps them, but it helps you. So don’t bury your past hurts. Use your experience to help those in need. Your own soul will be comforted from the privilege of bringing comfort to others.
When Jesus was on the earth, He washed His disciples feet as an example in John chapter 13. In verses 12 through 14, He says, “So after He had washed their feet, and had taken His garments, and was set down again, He said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you? Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.'” One way we can “wash one another’s feet” is through helping those who are suffering, just as Jesus helps us with our own suffering. Whatever you are physically able to do, whether it is helping with meals, baby-sitting during a difficult time, praying or just talking on the phone to someone who is hurting, you will be representing Jesus and following His example of washing one another’s feet.
We have looked at several ways you can be useful to God and to others. There is no need to feel worthless when we are ill. There is always something that can be done, and it will not only help others, but it in turn will be beneficial to our spiritual and emotional health.