Now I rejoice in what I am suffering for you, and 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. –Colossians 1:24
The great professor and author C. S. Lewis once wrote on the subject of pain,
“We can rest contentedly in our sins and in our stupidities, and everyone who has watched gluttons shoveling down the most exquisite foods as if they did not know what they were eating, will admit that we can ignore even pleasure. But pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
So often, Christians experience pain on seemingly intolerable levels. Yet what keeps them going through the hard times and trials of life is the fact that God is in control. In fact, God is so in control that He often will appoint suffering to His people in order to help them strengthen their dependence on Him.
Yet unfortunately today, much of the Christian message has been distorted, with many “preachers” of the Word proclaiming that God only wants us to be healthy, wealthy, and prosperous. This is a dangerous message not only because it isn’t biblical, but because it directly contradicts the experiences of so many faithful followers of Christ.
Pain is real. But in Christ, you have the hope that it’s temporary. So if you’re suffering today, deepen your dependence on God and remember that there will come a day when all pain will end and you’ll be with the Lord forever!
Ask God to give you the strength to persevere through pain and fully rely on Him through hard times.
Questions for thought
Why do so many buy into the lie that God only wants us to be healthy and prosperous? Do you believe He has purpose, even in your pain?
In the midst of your suffering, what steps can you take today to deepen your dependence on Christ?