Today you should read: Jeremiah 38
As followers of Jesus, suffering is inevitable. It may simply mean feeling awkward or being laughed at as a student in school, or not being invited out by family or friends, or if you live in some places in the world – it could mean prison, beatings, or death. Suffering comes in a variety of shapes and sizes. It’s different for everyone. But one thing is the same – Jesus followers will suffer. It’s part of the agreement – when you trusted in Jesus as your Savior – suffering went along with it.
Jeremiah has suffered a great deal. We’ve followed his chronicles for several weeks now as we’ve journeyed through this book. In today’s reading – he’s thrown in a cistern – starving and deep in mud – for simply preaching the truth.
This is true all over the world. If you a few extra minutes today – follow this link and read about some of your brothers and sisters suffering…
If God loves us so much, then why do we suffer?
There are a number of reasons we know, why God allows His children to go through suffering – and undoubtedly many we will never know
- If we enduring suffering as faithful servants of the Lord – it brings God glory. I know this may be hard to swallow – but for some of us – it is our greatest opportunity to glorify the Lord. More than in any other thing we do – how we deal with suffering reflects God to those around us.
- Suffering advances the Church. I don’t know why we do it – but we relax when things are good and we advance when things are tough. The persecution of the early church did more to advance the Gospel than any other single factor. This is still true today in persecuted countries.
- God can use suffering to get our attention. If we’re stubborn – sometimes nothing else will work to wake us up to what God is saying to us. God knows exactly what will get through to us, and as a good and gracious Father, He does what He must do to get us to where we need to be.
- Suffering makes us dependant on God alone.
“Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” – C.S. Lewis
Most of the time if we can depend on something or someone else we will. Suffering is the great equalizer that God uses in our lives.
I don’t know where this JumpStart finds you today – but if it’s in a time of suffering – be encouraged that God is a work in your life. If things are good – get ready – sufferings on the way!
By: Tim Parsons — Lead Pastor
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