“Christianity does not provide the reason for each experience of pain, but it does provide deep resources for actually facing suffering with hope and courage rather than bitterness and despair.” (Tim Keller)
Remember His words to you, dear Christian. Words of truth for you, His child, when you face suffering. Words to remind you of reasons for hope and courage while still in the middle of experiences that naturally cause pain. Words, not meant to provide the exact reason for your experience of pain, but meant to turn you from bitterness and despair — to fortify you, to remind you that He is in charge and He purposes good from it all:
“…we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also rejoice in our afflictions, because we know that affliction produces endurance, endurance produces proven character, and proven character produces hope. This hope will not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” (Romans 5:2-5)
Suffering yields endurance, and that endurance yields Christlike character, and that Christlike character yields unstoppable hope that does not disappoint. How so? Because, through it all and in it all, He pours the knowledge of His overflowing love for you into your heart by His Spirit.
Bitterness and despair can melt away. Bitterness and despair can be replaced by true hope and supernatural courage as you run to His arms. As, in His arms, you hear this: “Dearest child, I love you with forever love, and I’m not unaware of your pain. I have good purpose for you in it all.”
Oh, run there today.