Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Blessing of Pain

  by Soli Deo Gloria

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:2-4 (KJV)

Everyone pefers to deal with someone with a vision. We can comfortably deal with people when we believe they know where they are going. Many successful people  stand on the passage "Where there is no vision the people perish" (Proverbs 29:18) And this is perfectly correct when the vision belongs to you. What do you do when God has a vision for his people, and has chossen you as the vessel by which the vision will be fullfilled?

Sometimes God comforts [1] with the blessing of pain to ignite a desire in us to fullfill the vision he has for his people. God knows that without motivation, many of us would never fulfill the purposes for which God created us. Sometimes this comforting come in the form of hurt so deeply that the only thing we can do is seek God. But then the pain gets worst rather than better and our natural man thinks it Ok to throw up our hands in defeat, but the Spirit of God in us causes us to seek God all the more, until every fiber of our being desires God, and we press harder into Him.

In our sinful state ( natural man) we come to God hoping He would take away our pain,  we cry out to God “Fix this person in my life, my finances, my health, my relationship with  my wife or husband” However,  the suffering does not stop, the emotional, psychological and even physical pain seems to grow more intense even more than we can bear. We seek advice from our family, friends and even clergy, but though they all mean well, we find that they don't have a perscription for our pain. No since we have been coming to thse doctors our pain has only gotten worst. (Mark 5:25-26)

Then one day clarity comes, not concerning our problem, but about ourselves and our relationship with God, and we began to understand things about ourselves and about God that we would never have discovered had there been no pain.  Gradually, our heart changes the motivation for seeking God from deliverance from the pain, to loving obedience. We realize that the way we have been living though we thought it was good just wasn't good enough for God. We feel the santifiyng work of Holy Spirit causing us to dispise our past actions; slowly God is making us holy (2Thess2:13[2]), making us more like Christ (Phil 2:5[3]).  No longer do we seek God for deliverance from the pain; but with a contrite and repentent heart we seek God because He is God. We do those thing which are righteous not to obey any law, but because our love for God causes us to make a conscience effort to consecrated ourselves to God.
Now with a renewed mind we see the destiny and calling for our lives.  God often separates us from the old life by this or a similar painful process (Exodus 31:13[4]). Consider how Joseph must have felt, the pain of his individual crises, being sold into slavery by his own brothers because of jealousy. While he was suffering through slavery, and imprisonment. Wasn't he a man that was right before God? Even in his darkest hour he remained Faithful;  What had he done that would justify so many years of pain?  Joseph could not see it but God had a vision, and it required Joseph to be blessed by the pain so that Joseph could fullfill God's divine purpose.

So often when we have pain, we want to bypass the suffering, we want to get around the hurt. However, God does not want us to get around the pain, He wants to comfort us through the pain. God could have made it so that Neberkenezzar was not able to put his wrath on Shadrach Meshach and Abednego, but insted God comforted these three wise Jewish boys the mist of the furnance (Daniel 3:13-28). God  could have never let Peter get thrown in jail but instead He sent his Angel to open the doors to the prision (Acts 12:5-11). God could have made it so that we would not have to go through our suffering and pain but instead he desire to make is Himself known to us so that He can personally give us His vision.

When we are going through some things, we have to press hard into God, (Mark 5:27) so God can move us from a place of pain to a place of destiny.  Where we can come to the place where we realize the vision that God has. There are some wonderful things God has reserved for us as a result of our suffering, but we will never relize them unless we press harder in our pain. Knowing full well that there will come a time when we can look back on our pain and just like the three jewish boys, and Peter, and Joseph we can with confidence say to the enemy, to the tormentor to the origin of our pain  What you meant for evil, God meant it for good(Genesis 50:20)

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Your Brother in Christ
Soli Deo Gloria


[1] The word comfort and comforting are used in the biblical understanding; which is to motivate to do someting that you would not otherwise have done.
[2] 2 Thessalonians 2:13 (KJV) But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
[3] Philippians 2:5 (KJV) Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
[4] Exodus 31:13 (KJV) Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you.