Friday 12 June 2015

Sufferings:The Promise We Didn't Bargain For

Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble (Job 14:1)

Yes, and all who DESIRE to live GODLY in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution (2 Timothy 3:12).

From the above scriptures, it is clear that sufferings are promised for believers that choose to live godly in Christ Jesus, there are no exemptions and there are no exceptions. It does not suggest that you have sinned or you are a bad person, or God is punishing you for a previous sin that you had committed.

Jesus does not want us to be surprised when we experience sufferings. He said: "Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:10).  He also said that, "A servant is not greater than his master; if they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you" (John 15:20). Nonetheless, He said, the promise of our sufferings is not given to us to be discouraged from walking in the path of godliness; it is to prepare us for whatever difficulties that we would experience in this Christian journey and to build us up so as to be Christ-like.

Jesus said that "I have told you these things, so that you can have peace because of me. In this world you will have trouble. But cheer up! I have won the battle over the world." (John 16:33 NIRV). Jesus Christ had won the battle and He has deposited in you the power to win the battle.

James, the brother of Jesus must have had his own share of sufferings before he could encourage us in his opening line in the book of James 1, which states:

"My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing (James 1:2-4 KJV)."

The suffering is part of our growth process. Did you know that every believer has experienced hard times and sufferings? Unless they are new born babies or perhaps children. 

The book of 2 Corinthians 4:8-10 mentioned the role of sufferings in the life of a Christian, it states:

"We are pushed hard from all sides. But we are not beaten down. We are bewildered. But that doesn't make us lose hope.

We always carry around the death of Jesus in our bodies. In that way, the life of Jesus can be shown in our bodies." 

The benefit of being a Christian is that, you can ask the Holy Spirit for wisdom and power to manage the sufferings.

Apostle Paul told us that God would calm ours fears and ease our spirits. He reminded us that we are not in charge of ourselves but rather God is in charge of us. He encouraged us to place our worries and sufferings in the hands of God, and trust that God through Jesus Christ would walk with us through whatever sufferings came our way (Philippians 4:6-7). 

Have you gone through sufferings? Do you know anyone who has gone through terrible times? It could be the death of a loved ones, miscarriages, unexpected divorce, separation, breakup, failure, delay, etc? 

Be encouraged! I pray we would all find comfort and rest in God even in our most difficult times in Jesus name.

If you are living a life that is pleasing to God and you are experiencing sufferings, it means that you are precisely where Jesus predicted you would be.  He knows exactly what you are going through and He would see you through.

If you are experiencing sufferings, depend on God and find a trusted Christian to pray with you and to encourage you.

There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it (1 Corinthians 10:13). 

- Myss Lafunky

Enjoy your weekend!

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