Saturday, August 17, 2013

Why Am I Suffering?

I was looking for something to send out to my "Morning Devotional Group," (a group of friends that I email every morning with encouraging, inspirational thoughts, stories and scriptures) when I came across a book, "Reflections of His Image-God's Purpose For Your Life," by Nancy Missler, which was sitting on my bookshelf. It was full of dust...forgotten and hidden over the years. It grabbed my attention, I pulled it out, dusted it off and started scanning, looking for something to jump off the pages. That's when I abruptly stopped and read this: 


"Those of us who have lived long enough understand that life itself includes suffering. The 9th chapter of Ecclesiastes 9 points us to the truth that "all things come alike to all." Misfortune and evil and calamity and "time and chance" happen to everyone. (verses 2, 11) However, we also know that God is above all these things and He will use any or all of them as He sees fit to accomplish His perfect will in our lives. Suffering can be a result of our own sin, the sins of others, the schemes of Satan or from the fallen state of the human race. Here are a few other reasons suffering occurs: 

1)    To produce brokenness
2)    To destroy anything in our lives that is worthless, empty and steering us in  the wrong direction.
3)    To make us more pliable.
4)    To make us more Christ-like
5)    To endow us with more power.
6)    To experience the "fellowship of His sufferings," and
7)    To teach us how to help others, by our own experiences.

Another of God's purposes for suffering is to highlight the things in our own lives that must be dealt with. He wants us to make an honest self-evaluation of ourselves, which in turn, should lead us to confession, repentance and a change of lifestyle. "And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to test thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep His commandments, or not." (Deuteronomy 8:2) 

God put the book of Job, the longest book of the Bible, right in the center of the Bible for a very good reason: it's an example of faith in the night seasons and the determination never to give up. God intends for all of us to use this book as a "road map" through the dark times, always keeping in mind that at the end of the road, Job finally "saw" himself and God as he never had before, changing his life forever. (Job 42:5)" 

What a powerful reminder of continuing to seek the Lord during times of trial, asking for His wisdom, strength, patience and guidance through life's storms. Don't give up! Don't lose hope! Stand strong in the knowledge that through this you will come out victorious as you put your trust in the Lord every second, minute and hour of the day. Call out to Him and know that He is guiding you safely through this dark place. YOU ARE LOVED!

“I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted." Job 42:2  
"My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you." Job 42:5
"Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up." James 4:10
"Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:" 1 Peter 5:6   

1 comment:

  1. You are loved as well!
    I am not familiar with the book of Job on a deep level but I want to read it.
    Thank you. I learned of more reasons why God allows suffering.