suffering

Don’t Waste Your Trial (John 16:33)

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

John Piper wrote an encouraging booklet entitled¬†Don’t Waste Your Cancer that a dear friend gave to us.¬†It’s been helpful to read through it as my wife and I remain steadfast in the Lord through her condition. I would definitely consider this as a time when my family and I are facing trouble.

I believe that the 10 points Piper lists not only apply to life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, but to all “trouble” we encounter in this life. Depending on what version of the Bible you read, the word “trouble” is interchangeable with trial, tribulation, distress, and sorrow.

If you’re going through any of those today, then I’m here to tell you that it’s no coincidence or meaningless misfortune. God has a purpose for our trials. (more…)

For Your Sake (John 11:14)

“So then he told them plainly, ‘Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe.'” (John 11:14)

This morning I spoke to a co-worker and brother in Christ, who shared that he has gone through many life-threatening trials in his life due to several illnesses. As my wife goes through her own season of faith-stretching, Jesus gives me a wonderful reminder in John 11 that God can use suffering, even to the point of death, for our sake. (more…)

Enemies on the Prowl (Psalm 59:14-17)

“They return at evening, snarling like dogs, and prowl about the city. They wander about for food and howl if not satisfied. But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, and my refuge in times of trouble. You are my strength, I sing praise to you; you, God, are my fortress, my God on whom I can rely.” (Psalm 59:14-17)

The Bible mentions that David wrote this Psalm when King Saul had sent men to watch David’s house, in order to find an opportune time to kill him. If you remember, Saul was very jealous of David, and wanted to get rid of someone who he saw as a threat to his authority and throne. (more…)

Consider It Pure Joy

This week is turning out to be one of those weeks where things are so crazy that I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed with all that’s going on. The fact that I’m even finding the time or mind-share to write this post right now, is a miracle in itself.

A thought just struck me though. If your life is too easy, too smooth, or too painless, then I don’t necessarily think that’s a good thing. Bear with me on this thought. I’m not saying that God wants us to live a life of constant suffering (nor am I saying I want you guys to suffer hehe). Rather, He tells us in His Word that as His children, we’re to have an abundant life, characterized by and rooted in His love, joy, and peace (John 15:11). But there is definitely something to this suffering. (more…)