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When We Suffer

 

“And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast”. – 1 Peter 5:10

Thousands of books have been written about human suffering. Most of them grapple with the problem of why good people suffer. Some try to find some meaning in our experience of pain. In their study of suffering, many authors find their way back to the book of Job.

The Bible describes Job as perfect and upright, a man who feared God and shunned evil. He was also well known and wealthy, a man who gave generously to the needs of the less fortunate. Yet neither his godly life nor his great wealth shielded him from the calamities of life.

From Job’s experience, we discover that it is possible to undergo intense suffering and loss without coming apart at the seams. When things fall apart, the presence and the power of God are enough to carry us through. After losing all his material possessions and his ten children, Job “got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said…’The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. May the name of the Lord be praised'” (Job 1:20). How could he say that? The same way you and I can–by learning to trust God in every circumstance and to walk with Him one day at a time.

In our walk of daily discipleship, hard times will come. Yet from the book of Job, we are assured that our suffering is known to God, that Satan cannot touch our lives beyond the limits of God’s permission, and that God wants to use every circumstance of our lives for His glory and our good.

Prayer

Lord, thank you for Your sustaining presence, not only in the good times, but also in the bad. Amen.

To Ponder

If we are to identify with Christ, then suffering is part of the package.

(The Navigators)