Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Value of Suffering

When we’re confronted as we so often are with the harsh realities of life and the seemingly unjust sufferings that so many are forced to endure, it’s easy at times to entertain questions about God’s justice and sovereignty in the midst of so much pain. Our minds struggle to understand and accept that a loving God would allow those who love Him to experience such profound depths of hurt.

In Into the Depths of God, Calvin Miller writes, “The trials that keep us kneeling before our lifelong assignments are never haphazard. All the sufferings that are thrust upon us can serve to bring us to maturity.” Then he makes this startling statement: “Hurt is the essential ingredient of ultimate Christ-likeness.”

Peter writes, “Do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon your for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing.” We’re not to be surprised when we suffer nor consider it odd, but to rejoice that God has counted us worthy to follow in the footsteps of Him who suffered everything for us.

1 comment:

John Notestein said...

Hard but true words. I think all Christians question God as to why things happen sometimes, and the Bible is replete with much the same questions (Job and Psalms come to mind). Just when I think I have God figured out, I realize I'll never have Him figured out. I think I would rather have pat, black and white , clear cut answers rather than admit God is so far beyond what I can ever comprehend. There is plenty that we do know about Hom, though, an plenty of plain teaching on how to live a life pleasing to Him. I probably should concentrate on those and just stand in awe of the mystery of the rest.