It is our attempt, in these articles on suffering and the several that will follow in this series, to give you some measure of comfort in this tough quest. It is our prayer that you can use these essays on suffering in your teaching, personally and in your dealings with others. So when life gives a "bum rap" or a "harsh turn," you can seek not merely the "why", but rather the "how" we can grow and be improved, stronger, recovered, and thus more rapidly able to grow in Christ ourselves as well as make Him known to others. We can learn that what we have gone through has a reason and can be used for His glory and our betterment!
Key Bible verses on understanding suffering: Psalm 119; Matthew 5:10; Romans 8:18; 2 Corinthians 1:24; 12:9 Philippians 1:19-25; 2:17; Hebrews 10:24; James 1:2; 1 Peter 4:12-19
My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life. (Psalm 119:50)
My Comfort in My Suffering
How to Handle Sufferings Part I Why", "why", "why", "why"….? This is what I have said so many countless times throughout my life when bad things have come my way, and these ""whys" have been voiced to me as a pastor by so many countless people, too. In fact, I do not remember any conversation with a person who has been through a rough time or a loss that "why" has not come up. "Why" seems to be the theme, subject, and topic that confronts me both as a person and as a pastor. We all ask, ask, ask, "why", "why", "why"! Yet, what I have gleaned from the Scriptures and learned from life is that it is not...
Where are we when Life Hurts?
How to Handle Sufferings Part II Are you dealing with stress, troubles or sufferings? Or, is there perhaps someone near you who is? Is your life falling apart? So, what can be done? In James we are told to sing songs, to which you may say…What??? We are called to be praising our Lord, coming together in unity, with a willing, loving heart, even when we are in dire stress or trouble? And the answer is yes, because we will be so much better for it. How we deal with life when it gets tough is an aspect of real...
How to Handle Sufferings Part III What We can Do when People and Life Seem to Come Against Us! Are you being harassed, gossiped about, slandered, or mistreated? If not, it will come. We are called to prepare for it and even seek reconciliation if possible, lest it get worse. At the same time, we are called to remain firm in Christ, operating in His Fruit, and not let the misdeeds of others get the best of us. Yes, this is hard-very hard at times-but we can do it-and do it with excellence! When we operate in His love to others who are mean and hurt us, we are...
What about Suffering?
Basic overview on Suffering "My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life." (Psalm 119:50)
More on How to Handle Suffering
How one can overcome the fears, worries, hurts, and doubts of life and have more faith! Faith gives us hope, meaning we can have confidence in God for our future that is in His hands, and how we can also have confidence because He will lead us out of our past.
How one can overcome the fears, worries, hurts, and doubts of life and have more faith! We have three passages that deal with storms, being tossed in the sea of life, and confusion, dealing with issues of faith and doubt before a loving God who rescues us
God Really does have a Purpose behind your Problems!
God is our refuge and strength! As a pastor I hear this lament all of the time, sometimes it even comes from my own lips, "Why doesn't God help me in my troubles?" This is a legitimate question to ask. A lot of Christians tend to be afraid of asking God why, or earnestly seek to resolve their crisis. Thinking I do not have enough faith or I would not go through this. Or I do not want others to know, for they would think bad of me or that I caused it. Or we use the crisis to grab the attention ourselves. If we are going through tough times, we need to know why, and what we should do when we are in them. If not we...
Growing through Difficult Times of Waiting and Confusion
Suffering is an essential aspect of our Christian growth, whether it is mental, physical, financial, or spiritual. It is the main connection that enables the batteries to power us to be the best Christian possible. It is the link between the Holy Spirit and God's perfect plan working in us. Without this vital connection, the power source of our Lord will not be able to prime us for His service. We may have the ability and the power of the Spirit, but the vital link between them is missing. A spark of truth and service may pass between them, so we think we...
Why does God allow Evil?
This subject is often called, "The Problem of Evil!" "Evil!" When this word is proclaimed, images come to mind of Hitler, Mussolini, Saddam Hussein, a sadistic serial killer, or the mother who murders her own children. Perhaps Rwanda, Bosnia, the Killing Fields, concentration camps, gang violence, rape, heinous abuse, and murder are all images of evil. There is little dispute that such actions are evil; but, have you considered that evil can also be anything that goes against God? We may not think of ourselves as evil; perhaps sinners, moreover...
How did Jesus Suffer?
The Crucifixion of Jesus!
The Passion of Jesus! Jesus' Crucifixion From A Medical Point of View! The one thing that kept going through my mind as I researched, wrote, and taught on this subject. Jesus did this for me! He hung on that cross, and went through all this heinous, physical agony of the worst and most intense pain ever devised as torture that a human could conceive and be subjected to. He did this all for me; He took my place; He endured, as an innocent Person, what I deserved as a sinner!
- What we can do when people or life seem to come against us!
- Overcoming Hurt and Abuse
- Inner Healing that is Biblical
The key to dealing with this theme of suffering is taking to heart that when life is at its darkest, God is there. He understands, loving and carrying us through it. We need to accept the fact that God is in control, even if we do not understand how. It is by faith that we can endure and then learn from it, becoming better and recovered for it. We can place such faith in Him because of the assurance we have through His Word, even when we do not understand. Our true home and purpose is not here; it is still to come. We are not made for this world, we are just here to learn all we can, and with what Christ has given to us, make the best and most of the situations in which we find ourselves. Then, one day, we will be called to our true home in eternity, in Heaven. So, let us cling to the Hope we have in Christ, not the things we experience or the losses we have endured!
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Some further comforting verses: Psalm 31:9; Psalm 119:50; Isaiah 41:10; Romans 8:18; 28-29; 35-37; James 1:2-3; 12; John 9; 14:1; Colossians 1:24; 1 Thessalonians 1:6-7; 1 Peter 4:12-19; Hebrews 10:34; Revelation 21:4.