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More From Lauren Craft

July 10, 2020 by Lauren Craft (Virginia, USA)

Lives and livelihoods have been torn apart by the COVID-19 pandemic, but there is incredibly good news when we blink away our tears and look beneath the distressing headlines. We have a compassionate Savior who can relate firsthand to pain, disease, and even poverty. Because of his great love for us, Jesus didn’t shy away from hurt. That is one of the things I admire most about Jesus, and that was my thinking behind today’s devotional when I submitted it several years ago. Jesus isn’t an uncompassionate, distant being. He chose to come to rescue of those with troubles—not walk away from them. He also experienced many kinds of hardships in his own body and heart. 

Consider a few examples of Jesus’ hardships, which are similar to those we currently face:

  • Many people are grieving the loss of loved ones. When Jesus’ dear friend Lazarus died, Jesus wept as he gathered with the fellow mourners (see John 11:35).
  • Layoffs and reduced hours have left more people scrambling financially. We know that Jesus never lived in luxury. He once said, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head” (Luke 9:58, NIV).
  • People who have contracted COVID-19 have suffered physically. Jesus too felt many types of pain, especially as he was led to the cross. The other day, another powerful connection occurred to me: Jesus even knew the pain of strained lungs and struggling to breathe as he hung on the cross.

Whatever troubles we face, Christ has felt our pain or something very, very close to it. His empathy is just as real as when his feet walked the earth. His compassion is just as tangible as when he healed the many people in the Bible. After all, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8, NIV). He is always eager to comfort us, listen to us, and intercede for us.


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The Upper Room magazine's mission is to provide a practical way to listen to scripture, connect with believers around the world, and spend time with God each day.

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