In 2 Cor. Paul speaks of his suffering for the purpose of comforting. Many times we go through suffering in order to comfort others.
Dr. Mitchell shared the story of a woman who had a 6-month old baby. One bright day, the mother was in the kitchen with the baby in her armsthe baby died there in her arms. Her husband, a pastor, a funeral director tried to take the dead baby away from his mother. The mother would not give him up. A little lady two blocks away heard of this. She had lost her baby six months previously. She came over and sat with the woman. She didnt try to take the baby, but began to tell of her experiences and how her baby was in Heaven with Jesus and she, too, would go there one day. Without saying a word, the woman handed her the baby. She took him in to the father, came back, and both on their knees were praying. She was able to comfort her because of her own suffering.