I have been for some time slowly working my way through Edith Schaeffer's book Affliction. I bought it in 1995, I think: I started it in 2010. It is a book that sometimes leaves me weeping, and often leaves me nodding, and writing a prayer in the margin. The bookmark I have in it is a plain strip of card stock upon which I wrote, "In all our afflictions, He is afflicted."
That ministers to me so much. Fellowship with Jesus in suffering makes a temple out of a pit.
I read some time back about a study that showed that being touched by a loved one reduced pain in patients -- I think it even lowered their blood pressure. In the midst of wracking pain I remember the comfort I received from my husband's hand laid on me. When we suffer, learning to recognize the touch of His hand is one of the benefits of the experience. Unlike our medical caregivers, who have often not experienced whatever we are being treated for, our Great Physician is afflicted in all our afflictions. The difference between care administered by doctors and nurses who have suffered themselves, and those who have only read of suffering is huge. Our High Priest is touched with our weaknesses -- He suffers our hurts. And He lays His hand on us in them.