Did you ever have one those days when you just wanted to throw your hands up in the air and shout, “I quit?” Work is too much, family is too demanding, friends just don’t get it. And God? Well, surely he forgot to check on you, because you just don’t see Him anywhere!
I’ve had those days . . . weeks . . . shoot it lasted several months once. And what does God have to say about suffering?
- Romans 5:3-4 – We also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.
- I Peter 4:12-13 – Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.
- 2 Timothy 2:3 – Join with me in suffering, like a good soldier of Christ Jesus.
So, glory in suffering, don’t be surprised by suffering and come jump in the suffering pool with all the other soldiers of Christ. This is good news?
Actually, it is. And a good argument for reading ALL the Bible and not just picking out the parts that suit my purpose on a particular day. Because I suffer, God can offer me comfort. Because I suffer, I can offer comfort to others who are suffering, too.
This morning, I wanted to quit on several fronts. The long-range plan at work is overwhelming. I sometimes feel like I’ll never see my books published. And clearly I have zero impact on the world as a Christian. And then Glynnis’ post popped into my in-box. And see? I’m not the only one. She comforted me. I hope, maybe, I can comfort you.
2 Corinthians 1:3-7 – Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.