Lean Into Suffering
“I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.” Philippians 3:10-11
In order to experience the deep joys of the Father, we must experience the heartaches, too. In order to know Jesus the way that I have known Him, I have had to give my heart to people in ways I never would have chosen. With all the delight of knowing Him and seeing His miracles, there is the risk of loss and the absolute reality of pain. People I love have died in my arms, in my living room, in hospital beds just across town, and this, after I’ve spent hours, days, weeks tending to them, praying for healing, and believing by faith they would defy what the doctors said.
I am saddened by the injustices of the world and my heart breaks. But it is the reality of this fallen place. We are never promised we will be without suffering. We are not offered a life of continual gifts and pleasures and ease. In fact, we are told the opposite. We are told that we will have troubles in this life. Why are we then surprised when the trials come? The angst of suffering is the thing that keeps me looking for Jesus. And we do not lose heart because though our outward flesh is wasting away, we are being renewed every day. He has overcome the world! And it is in Him where we find the strength to lean in to suffering, because when we do, it gives Him an opportunity to meet our needs in a way like no one else can.