2 Corinthians 1:1–5 (ESV) “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, To the church of God that is at Corinth, with all the saints who are in the whole of Achaia: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.”
Having been born again, and brought into Christ by the Holy Spirit – into His family – we now live as aliens in this world as He did. Knowing true holiness now, we suffer remaining in this fallen, sin-sick world, experiencing it from a completely new perspective than we once did. This is a high honor He bestows upon us, to be transferred out of the kingdom of darkness, and into His kingdom. (Colossians 1:13)
This is what is behind the “groanings” of Romans 8:22-26 and later in this letter, 2 Corinthians 5:2-4.
We do not share in His sufferings as though somehow WE pay for sin in some respect. This is His exclusive work. Ours, is to be allowed to enter into the reality of His sufferings in leaving Heaven, and becoming incarnate. It is a most intimate opening up of His heart to us. It is as though He says “come inside me, and feel what I felt” – if only in the most minute degree. It is a priceless treasure to know this world as it really is in His eyes – and to know something of how being here impacted Him. This is intimacy of the deepest kind. We need to bear this in mind when we grow weary of being here too. Growing weary of sin and its discord with our God is a gift. Don’t refuse it or throw it away. Be glad you can want to be free of sin and its effects, not because they are uncomfortable in the natural, but because they are antithetical to your new nature in Christ Jesus.
This is what He suffered so as to pity us and act toward us in mercy – and so it is it ought to produce the very same result in us. It ought to make us sympathize and empathize with our brothers and sisters in Christ – and to minister to them as He has ministered to us – indeed OUT of how He has ministered to us.