“So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. (1 Peter 1:6 NLT)
Based on what I mentioned in yesterday’s Post, what’s my “take-away,” the “profit” of my faith-building pain? One very valuable benefit of that painful season was that it taught me to never doubt in the darkness what I know to be true in the light.
Though the doctor’s advised my son, because of the chemo and radiation treatments, that he’d likely never become a father, at age thirty-nine he fathered Hannah Christine, now almost seven years old and my only grandchild.
The profit of pain for me is the hope that whatever life sends my way, I have a Savior who loves me and is for me. Nothing catches Him by surprise and every pain is a potential platform upon which the Lord can do what only He can do in my life. He is faithful and true and He always keeps His promises. His Word is reliable and filled with wisdom that will guide and sustain me in every season.
I’ve learned that there are insights and understandings that can be gleaned from pain that can be learned in no other way. I’ve learned that our circumstances are God’s friends, partnering with Him to help us conform more perfectly to the likeness of our Savior, which is God’s will for all who follow Him (Romans 8:29).
Steven Furtick said, “Some of the reasons you gave up were not because it was hard, but because you didn’t know you were winning.” Sitting by my bed, sobbing tears of regret and loss, I didn’t feel like a “winner,” but because of Jesus, I was and am!
Peter saw things in his pain and heartache that led him to say in his first letter, chapter 1, verses 6-7: “So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead (emphasis mine), even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold – though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.” (NLB)
I love the oft quoted words of C.S. Lewis: “We can ignore even pleasure. But pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
If this is a season of pain for you, hear the word of the Lord for you: “Be still, and know that I am God!” Psalm 46:10 (NLB) Find a quiet spot and listen for God’s “megaphone” to speak hope, courage, wisdom and healing into your weakness and fear. Know you are loved and the Lord is with you, for you and He has plans for you that are too incredible for you to comprehend in this moment. Satan is a liar and a deceiver who hates you and will seek to silence the voice of truth. Immerse yourself in God’s Word, worship and fellowship with others who can love you and give you the loving support you need in this hour. You are not alone – never have been – never will be!
Blessings, Ed 🙂