And just what is that Divine perspective on suffering:
Don’t be surprised at your suffering…Jesus suffered greatly and He was PERFECT!
Suffering has many faces:
- Religious persecution is only one
- Death of a loved one
- Loss of a job
- Abuse etc.
God allows suffering not to punish, but to purify and perfect. Just be sure your sufferings and hardships are not being caused by your own wrong doings or bad decisions!
Easter is coming up in a few weeks:
- Many churches will be filled with people who aren’t usually there
- New clothes are supposed to signify a new, clean life
- Spring themes often remind us of the coming out from the harshness of winter (except here in FL!)
So much is often lost in the religious celebratory aspect of the Resurrection…but I want us to see something of the pattern…the word picture God gives us of suffering and persecution.
The suffering and death of Jesus Christ gives us a framework:
- When God seems absent, He may be closest of all
- When God seems dead, He may be coming back to life
The three-day pattern we see at His death and resurrection is for ALL of our trials…
1 Peter 4:12-13 “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing; so that also at the revelation of His glory, you may rejoice with exultation.”
Don’t look at the hardships. Keep on keeping on…with Jesus – ‘Cuz this is NOT all there is!
NOW GO LIVE IT!
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