Why Do We Suffer? Part 4
As I anticipated, I’m starting to get some feedback and questions about this current series. I think it might do us all some good to linger on this topic and look at some of the difficulties that pain and suffering present. Let’s start with this thought: It has been my experience that many believers tend to see their suffering as a kind of punishment from God.
That’s not always the case, although the Bible clearly teaches that there are times when God disciplines His people. (I would encourage you to read Hebrews 12:5-6). Most of our suffering is the natural consequence of separating ourselves from our Creator. God gave us life but He's more that that, He IS our life. He is our source of life and He sustains us.
The Apostle Paul once addressed the great philosophers of Athens right in the middle of the Areopagus. As he stood before these learned scholars, he said:
“The God who made the world and all things in it … since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things; and He made from one man every nation of mankind … that they would seek God … for in Him we live and move and exist … ‘For we also are His children.’”
Our life and wellbeing depend on God yet we choose a life without Him. By doing this we shut ourselves off from the One who blesses and sustains us. We choose to embrace a world full of promises which gives pain and suffering instead.
We openly reject a God whose Holy Spirit is called “The Comforter.” His Son, Jesus, experienced every pain and suffering that separation from God brings. No matter what we go through, we know that He endured Himself for the very purpose of defeating that suffering for us.
He understands and He has endured for you. Turn to Him in your suffering and He can lead you into peace and hope. Our respite from the pain of suffering of this world lies in our relationship with the God who heals and comforts.
“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”