I remembered how painful breaking both my legs in '94 was & how miserable it was to be crippled for a year... & how, afterward, painful experiences that used to frighten me didn't seem so threatening. Even those "I-wish-I-could-die" ... toilet-worshipping, flu sessions don't seem as bad to me any more.
As I met with the Lord this morning I found myself reflecting on reasons to thank our God for the suffering we experience...
- It creates opportunities to refine character & attitute;
- It teaches perspective & endows endurance;
- It renews trust in God alone;
- It reminds us of our weakness & frailty & humbles us;
- It helps us empathize with others who suffer;
- It moves us toward community dependence (mutual need);
- It makes us appreciate gladder days;
- It makes us long for heaven;
- It reminds us of the sin that permeates this world & the reason we strive to set people free from it.
Is it even possible to mature in Christ without suffering?"Father, sometimes You remove the suffering; and sometimes, You refine the sufferer. Thank You, loving Lord, for knowing when to do which."