“Be still, and know that I am God. Suffering is a result of the fall. What was Paul saying there? So if I am part of His family, then He is working even my suffering for good. Yet, God will carry us through some of the darkest seasons of our lives to show His incredible love for us. On the subject of pain, Frances Ridley Havergal understood well the role God intends when people experience physical suffering. Colossians 1:24 says, “… I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the Church.” This was written by the Apostle Paul, and it is interesting that he states he is filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. God can use struggles, heartbreaks and tragedies in ways to bring about His glory and our good. He suffered alienation from his home town. Nestled in the middle of one the Bible’s most well-known passages is God’s definition of good. He suffered the loss of a friend, Lazarus. Lord, allow us to embrace your will, not to hide from it. Joseph tied himself to the pillar of this promise and held on for dear life. She says on page 66, "...pain is not mystery when looked at in the light of God's holiness, and in the light of Calvary...Pain, as to God's own children, is, truly and really, only blessing in disguise. The things you most wish were removed from your life are often the very things that God uses to shape you and make you into the believer he wants you to be. God allows us to go through suffering, and then He uses that to strengthen our faith in Him. He suffered loneliness. He spent time in the presence of God and was the instrument God used to lead the children of Israel from Egypt. Just like the difference between giving a child a new toy and making him work to earn it. What was Paul saying there? Honest Conversations: A HeartStrong Faith Podcast. THE GROWTH WE DESIRE. It is not joy. ... God uses trials to show that he alone deserves the credit. God is in control. We need something to hold on to that will keep us from simply drifting away. Sometimes we only learn the value of something - health, money, a relationship - by losing it. Psalm 68:19 The Lord deserves praise! So, Were Mary and Joseph Actually Refugees? Follow us on our social media platforms: Twitter: @RebeccaACarrell ; @lizannrod ; @HeartStrongF If God allowed His people to go through this life without suffering, then we could never be a source of hope to this world. He is the teacher. It is moments like those that believers get to come alongside Jesus and minister to those that are hurting. It’s someone who can look us in the eye and say, “It gets better,” and know that they know. We need something to hold on to that will keep us from simply drifting away. But in suffering God takes away the world so the heart will hold to him in full sincerity. “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”. 21. The future is only God’s to behold (compare Ecclesiastes 8:7). Repurposing Pain: How God Uses All Things for Good. Every weekday, get RELEVANT's top five articles delivered to your inbox! Megan also served as the Director of Student Resources for David C Cook Publishers, where she led a team in creating TruIdentity, a spiritually forming, Christ-centered, and family empowered youth ministry curriculum. And unlike Job’s friends that could not understand his pain, we need someone who has been where we are. Our God is a God who delivers; the LORD, the sovereign Lord, can rescue from death. Sometimes pain can be a blessing in disguise. It’s the widow who comforts the grieving wife who lost her husband much too soon. You know, we really do need to face up to what this book, the Holy Bible, teaches us about the Christian life and what we should expect from it! Jesus was “Rabonni!” (John 20:16). Someone who can share the source of their hope that it does get better. There is simply a longer lasting value in what you must earn. Apart from the holy work of salvation on the cross, Christ was afflicted. Jesus was “Rabonni!” (John 20:16). Yes, the innocent suffer (see Job 1–2), but God can redeem that suffering. He never suffered the death of His mother. He wants to use that problem for good in your life. Romans 8:28 says, “For those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” “All things” includes both good and bad things. Please rate, review, and subscribe to the Honest Conversations Podcast. Is there lacking in Christ’s afflictions? 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It’s someone who can look us in the eye and say, “It gets better,” and, Carlos Whittaker: You Have to Want an Abundant Life Before You Can Live It, After all, “A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher,” (Luke 6:40). He gives us new strength. Wouldn’t it be so much easier if God just gave us stronger faith? Being Sensitive to Hurt. In fact, Paul says that’s one of God’s plans for our pain: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 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. How Should You Spend Money During the Holidays? Illustration: Joseph Unfortunately, no one wants to actually go through that suffering to get that stronger faith. As an international speaker at churches, conferences, and university chapels, Megan Fate Marshman is a leading voice to this generation. God is completely in charge. We can try to ignore the pain and hope it all goes away or we can face it and let God … So, how can that be considered “lacking?”. Facebook: @HeartStrongFaith How is suffering good? She authored the books “Meant for Good” and “SelfLess,” and co-wrote the book, “7 Family Ministry Essentials,” with Dr. Michelle Anthony. Our dependence on Him is critical because we can no longer depend on ourselves. He suffered. A. How is that? 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Romans 8:28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. But the truth is, if we didn’t “earn” it through suffering, that faith wouldn’t last. It is moments like those that believers get to come alongside Jesus and minister to those that are hurting. Several years ago, I had lunch with a man who had survived cancer. 1. So, if God’s purpose remains a mystery, rest in the certainty that nothing bad ever happens that God cannot use for good. And it is of no use to make nice distinctions between God causing pain and permitting pain. When God uses pain to make something beautiful by Wendy van Eyck - encouragement and inspiration from Christian women bloggers! You see, one of the greatest connections we can make with someone is in the sharing of an affliction. God Uses Pain to Guard Us. God warned Adam that eating the forbidden fruit would result in … A deep devotion to the Lord never excuses us from pain and trial. After all, “A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher,” (Luke 6:40). I believe there is a side to suffering we miss when we focus solely on our pain rather than on God’s greater purpose. The prophets had to learn and grow. In our times of pain and weakness, when we have exhausted ourselves through work and tears, when we have worried and screamed through our frustrations, when there is just nothing left of us, we turn to Him. It's likely that as a child your parents told you not to touch a hot stove. And bit by bit, He reveals Himself to us. Well today lets consider the Christian life, our expectations of it, and also trials, and how God uses them for good! The good news is that God did not leave us here to suffer pointlessly. 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