It says this:Now may the Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, Who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word. (NASB) This morning I read it over and over again. Some key words stood out to me. But before I go there, let's adapt it to the caregiver.
It asks that the Lord will strengthen your hearts in every good work...that is not limited to inside the four walls of the church. Actually, very little good works goes on from inside the church building itself. You'll find that most of the time what God would call good works happens outside as we are showing His favor to others. As a caregiver, you are doing good works. You are taking care of His man, or His woman. It may be your spouse, your child, or deemed your responsibility. But the reality is that you are ministering to their every need... and in so doing you are ministering to Him. Now, that's good works!
Remember that He is moved by our pain, He Himself bore our sorrows, He carried our grief. Grief is not a sin, sorrow is not a sin. He feels the pain we have in this and every moment no matter what is inflicting it. He does not look at the source and say we are unworthy of His love, His care. Instead as this verse indicates He gives us eternal comfort and good hope. Those are two wonderful adjectives there; eternal and good.
He is offering us a comfort that goes beyond what we feel here in time and stretches into eternity; it's not temporal! And more than just a pacifying hope...He is giving us a good hope. This is more than just a little "gee I hope this all gets better." It's a hope that goes beyond that and says, but if not....we will not bow! No matter what happens in this life - what He has accomplished for us in the realm of eternity will stand. It remains unchanged. Now that's a good hope!