Sermon - Why Did Jesus Come?: To Identify With Our Pain.

Date: 
Sunday, March 18, 2018 - 10:30am

This morning Rev Sadekie spoke about how Jesus Came to Identify With our Pain.

 

When faced with someone who has been through a traumatic or stressful event or time we need to remember not to say, “I understand how you are feeling.”  This phrase can serve to belittle the circumstances this person has just persevered through.  You can’t possibly know how that person is feeling and that can lead to annoying a person you are trying to encourage or console.

Instead, Rev Sadekie said we should learn to empathize with others.  To identify with how you can see that the person must have felt when they were going through that scenario.  You don’t have to have experienced it, but you are able to identify how it would have felt if you had gone through it.  So, we could say, we can only imagine how difficult that is for you to endure; or I can not conceive the pain that you are feeling right now.

Jesus seeks to convey to us that he can empathize with us without causing us pain.

Jesus Christ came not to represent himself, rather to act as our advocate, the mediator between us and God.  He came to serve people and to teach.

In order to identify with us, he had to go through the experience of being human.  Although He was a son, he learned obedience through suffering.  Jesus having come down to live among humanity has a full understanding of what it means to be human, and the challenges that we endure.

And because He suffered and did not sin, he became the source of our salvation; He became our example to follow.  He proved that it is possible to survive anything.

It is possible to survive figuring out who you are, to survive an overwhelming family, a disapproving family.  He reminds us that it is possible to survive betrayal, denial, being undermined by those you lead, being under suspicion.  He knows what it is like to lose someone you love, to try to balance family and work, to be burdened and overwhelmed.

Because he went through these things we can be confident that there is nothing that we can not endure.  He is our benchmark, our example.

Just as Jesus is able to identify with us, we are called to identify with Him by following his example.  We need to experience suffering as part of the process of learning patience.  Longer suffering allows us to cope with suffering long.

Self control, patience, strong stomach; all these things are taught and learned through suffering experiences.  The fruits of the spirits can not be learned by sitting.  You must engage with the opposite of the fruit of the spirit to get it.

We experience suffering so that we can learn patience.  We experience love as a part of the process of learning to be thankful and having self-control.

As we learn to empathize as Christ has with us, identifying with our experience, it equips us to empathize and identify with others.  To see their joys as our joys and experience their pains as our pains.  And where possible we have the capacity and are ready and eager to serve them with our prayer, with our presence, and our purses.