“…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.” (ESV – Read the chapter)
Why does God comfort us? Why does He extend any grace to us? Well, the first answer is that He does it because He is gracious. It is in His nature to do this for us. The fuller answer and the one to which Paul is pointing here is that He does it so that we can pass along the blessing to other people.
God always acts in the best interest of the other. His love always moves outward to find an object. When that love is poured out on us regardless of the form it happens to take, it is intended not to stay with us, but to be poured out on still others.
Think about it like this: We often speak of God’s love as being poured out on us like water from a giant pitcher. Well, what is the object of a pitcher’s water? A glass. What good is it to pour water into a glass and leave it there? None! After a while the water grows stagnant and stale. It loses its flavor. It begins to be infected by the environment in which it resides. This makes it even worse. After enough time, the environment sufficiently infects it that it is no longer safe to drink. The water in the glass becomes a poison that will destroy anyone who drinks it.
The same is true with the grace God gives to us. If we let it stay in us and do not let it flow through us it will grow old and stale in us. It will become twisted by the sin in our hearts and will eventually become a poison that destroys the people around us even as it destroys our own life.
But, when we let it flow through us, we remain clean and healthy and able to be used by Him again and again to pass on His grace to the world around us. We become what He designed us to be in the first place.
This is our aim. When we receive a gift from Him the best thing to do with it, the only thing to do with it, is to pass it along to others so that they might share in the blessing. In this way the blessings will rebound back to us and we will experience them even more sweetly than we did the first time.