Monday, December 13, 2010


Who has not asked the question, “Why? Why me? Why my family? Why is this happening to us?” These are familiar questions. No one is immune to suffering and adversity.

Job says Man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward (Job 5:7). Some suffer for what they have done; others suffer because of what people do to them. Many suffer from circumstances which they cannot control. There can be nights of agony when God seems so unfair and it seems that there is no possible help or answer.

Temporary relief may seem adequate for the moment. But the real solution to suffering is not to isolate it in an attempt to do away with it, nor even to grit our teeth and endure it. The solution, rather, is to condition our attitudes so that we learn to triumph in and through suffering.

When the Apostle Paul sought relief from his “thorn in the flesh,” God did not take it away, but reassured him. He said in 2 Cor. 12:9 "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Paul concurred in 2 Cor. 9:8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.

Billy Graham says: “Nowhere does the Bible teach that Christians are exempt from the tribulations and natural disasters that come upon the world. Scripture does teach that the Christian can face tribulation, crisis, calamity, and personal suffering with a supernatural power that is not available to the person outside of Christ.”

If you know anything about Job you know he lost everything. He lost his children, he lost his home, his business, his friends’ loyalty, his wife's confidence, and then finally he lost his health. He came to the conclusion at the end of it all that he wished that he had never been born. If anybody knew about trouble, Job knew about it. Yet he developed such a faith in his God through his trials that he could say “Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him;” (Job 13:15). There's a turning point within the book of Job, and at the end in the last chapter it says in Job 42:10 The LORD made him prosperous again and gave him twice as much as he had before. He was blessed again, he was given health, he was given his friends back, and he was given a beautiful family and abundance of riches. And he lived another 140 years.

Handling suffering seems to be a question of attitude: “What can I learn from it? How can I use it to the advantage of God’s eternal purposes?”

Learn to look over and beyond the suffering in order to see God’s higher purposes and what He wants to teach you. Give altitude to your attitude.

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