In times of suffering, we desire to be understood. We long to be heard, for our difficulties to be shared, and for someone to sympathize with us. Rather than someone who can “fix our problems,” sometimes what we need most is a shoulder to cry on. This is desire is embedded within the human heart.
God knows this need. Out of his love for us, he has provided the person of Jesus Christ to quench this desire for sympathy. Hebrews 4:15 says that Christians do not have “a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses.” Rather, we have a high priest “who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.”
Jesus can sympathize with us because he was made to be like us “in every respect” (Heb 2:17). Jesus is truly man. He is just as human as you are. His deity did not prohibit suffering. His sufferings were just as real as yours. He was “a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief” (Isa 53:3).
However, Jesus is not just some friend who suffers along with you. Jesus is divine. He is truly God. Because Jesus is divine, he can sympathize with your difficulties to an infinite degree—far beyond what a friend can do. He “gets it” far better than anyone else does. Further, unlike a loving friend, he can deliver you from your sufferings. He can save you. He is able.
How are we to respond to such a savior as Christ? Hebrews 4:16 tells us. We are to storm Jesus’ throne of grace by means of prayer “that we may receive mercy and grace to help in time of need.” Pour your heart out to Christ. He understands.