For these things I weep; mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul is far from me: my children are desolate, because the enemy prevailed. ~Lamentations 1:16
Recently, a man that had been reached through our church went home to be with the Lord. His departure from this life was so sudden. My wife and I made an appointment to see his wife, and the best we could with God’s enablement, provided her with comfort during her time of loss. Comfort is being able to find hope when things feel hopeless. Comfort is finding rest for a soul that is troubled. Comfort is your spirit being cheered after weeping that has endured for a night. It is having someone who understands and cares at your side. However, what do you do when there is none to comfort you? Five times in Lamentations 1, Jeremiah makes mention that there is none to comfort, or there is no comforter. What do you do when the Comforter is gone?
We see the role of the Comforter.
“And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;” John 14:16. The Comforter for every believer in Christ is the Holy Spirit. The original word for “Comforter” means “One Who comes alongside of you.” It means that Someone very close and special is at your side. It is an affectionate term that refers to the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We are sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise. He is the earnest of our inheritance at the moment of conversion. As He indwells us, He gives us “comfort” of being our best Friend. Aren’t you thankful for the Holy Spirit?
We see the remorse of the Comforter.
“And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption,” Eph. 4:30. “Quench not the Spirit,” 1 Thess. 5:19. The Spirit can be grieved by our spirit, our attitude, and our words. When two people are grieving, neither are in a position to comfort the other. Both are hurting and weighed down by sorrow. When we grieve the Holy Spirit by our sin, He is weeping and sorrowing over us. The people of Jerusalem turned their backs against God, and were suffering immense sorrow from being chastened with devastating losses. In Lam. 1:2, 9, 16, 17, and 21, we sadly read that there was none to comfort Jerusalem.
We see the restriction of the Comforter.
We cannot lose the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We are sealed until the day of our redemption. However, our actions, attitude, spirit, and words do affect Him. The Spirit is grieved over our sins. He is grieved when we live with bitterness, wrath, anger, malice, and unforgiveness. He is grieved with our vulgar and hurtful words. He is also quenched. His ability to work in our lives and help us is nullified as a fire that is put out when dirt and water cover it. The people of Judah had sinned so grievously against the Lord that their actions put a wall between them and God. It was not God who put up this wall, but rather it was Judah who did so. This wall made them powerless, and separated between them and God. Christian friend, it is a terrible thing to grieve alone! It is a terrible thing to hurt the Holy Spirit in such a way that we restrict His ability to work in us.
We see the recovery of the Comforter.
Even though the Spirit can be restricted, the sweetness of His presence and power can be recovered. There must be complete and truthful confession of our sins. We must realize that our sins gave place to the devil, and we must reclaim that space the devil occupies. We must confess our sins by name, ask for God’s forgiveness, and be emptied of self so that the Holy Spirit can reclaim lost ground in our lives. When David confessed his terrible sins to God, he also prayed, “Take not away thy Holy Spirit from me.” He desired the sweetness of the Spirit’s fullness once again in his life, and did not want to restrict it again.
Has the Comforter been restricted in your life? Have you come to God in truthfulness concerning your attitude, spirit, and words? Don’t be one whose life shows “there is no comforter.” Live in the power and fullness of a Spirit-controlled life.
Have a comforted God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Psalm 146-150