Thought- There is often beauty to be found in the midst of our suffering.
Scripture- “But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.” 1 Peter 4:13
Insight: In day 26 of learning to apply biblical principles to our daily life, what we are referring to as Practical Christianity, let’s consider what it means to find beauty even during suffering due to our relationship with Jesus Christ. News flash! Just because we are Christian doesn’t mean we don’t endure great suffering in this world. In fact, many times we suffer maybe even more because of the persecution that comes our way by being a Christian. People who don’t believe resent the fact that we have found a peace that maybe has alluded them despite their own best efforts and they will seek to try and reject our testimony that our peace comes through a personal relationship with Christ. Many will try to mistakenly reject our faith because of their false claim that a “loving” God” would not allow His people to suffer. However, we know that not only do we grow immensely in our faith because of our trials and tribulations, but often we find God’s true and sometimes hidden beauty right in the middle of our biggest storms, for there is where we learn the strength of our Anchor in Christ Jesus.
There can be beauty during suffering? This sounds insane, and on the surface, it is. But I have found some of the biggest breakthroughs in my faith have taken place during intense suffering. When I had nothing but lifelong bitterness and anger towards my Father for his lack of interest and his indifference in my life, when he never showed up for games or commitments he had made, I was suffering. Jesus met me during that suffering and taught me forgiveness and grace. When I was suffering financially and living in a self-inflicted nightmare around some real estate decisions I had made that had gone terribly wrong, Jesus met me and told me He was using these difficulties to teach me some important lessons. When longtime friends rejected me because of my new belief in Jesus, He said I am with you and I will never leave you or forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). His grace was sufficient for me ( 2 Corinthians 12:9 ) and in fact, I have never felt lonely in my life now that I walk with him daily. We all suffer in our relationships, our marriages, our careers from time to time. Does anyone like suffering? Not unless you are insane. But there can be beauty in the suffering because that is often where we experience the beauty of deep, personal encounters with Jesus. Those encounters strengthen our faith and leave us reinvigorated. They change us and show us new depths of God’s love and power and that is beautiful in ways that words cannot express.
Prayer: Lord God, let us find beauty during our suffering by searching deeper for you in the middle of it. Your beauty during our suffering can change us and leave us way better off than before. If there are no tests, we would have weak and shallow testimony’s to how great you are. We praise you in the storm Lord Jesus. Amen.