God gives us peace and courage to endure
We have all seen people in the midst of pain shake their fist at God in anger. While others who are suffering have been softened by God and become a more loving person who helps others. One woman loses a child to a drunk driver and becomes bitter for the rest of her life, whereas another turns to God for her pain. This second woman eventually works through her pain, becomes proactive and starts the organization MADD, Mothers Against Drunk Driving. This organization has helped many hurting parents.
What is the benefit of running from God? Where does it lead? We can turn from God or we can choose to look at our suffering as an opportunity for God. When we turn to Him He is there to help us. In John 16:33 Jesus says, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” Jesus tells us we are going to struggle and suffer pain. Yet, in the midst of tribulations He will give us peace in our suffering and courage for the future. Where is God when we hurt? He is with us in the person of Jesus Christ; fully God and fully man.
The vast majority of suffering is from people as a result of sin. Yet in the midst of evil, God uses tragedy to bring people to Christ, to develop our character, and to demonstrate His love and grace to a hurting world. God promises to work all things together for good, and he will!
Whatever difficult circumstances you find yourself in today or in the future, the Bible gives us answers and hope. God wants to give us comfort and peace. We read in Psalm 34:18 “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Are you brokenhearted? Are you crushed in Spirit? Jesus knows your pain; ask Him for His peace.
Truth is I could never love a distant God, a God who sits back and watches us struggle and hurt. But I can’t help but love a God who came to earth as a man to suffer and die on the cross for my sins and your sins. Jesus is the answer to the question of suffering. He participates in our pain.
Jesus has told us He is there sitting beside us in the lowest places of our lives.
- Are you broken? He was broken, like bread for us.
- Are you despised? He was despised and rejected of men.
- Do you cry out that you can’t take any more? He was a man of sorrows and acquainted to grief.
- Do people betray you? He was sold out himself.
- Do people turn from you? They hid their faces from Him as from a leper.
Does God ever enter our own private hell? Yes He does! Jesus Christ lives in us and our pain is His pain; our tears are His tears. He is here to give us peace and courage to endure. We just need to turn to Jesus and place our trust in Him.