Sunday, September 26, 2010

“…but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance - character. And character - hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His Love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit.” Romans 5:3-4

“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” Romans 8:18

Ok, so say you are out with friends and have too much to drink. They know you are drunk, but they let you drive home by yourself anyway.

Case scenario one: You get picked up for drunk driving and lose your license. Imagine your job requires you to be able to drive, so you lose your job too. You want to blame your friends for getting you drunk and letting you drive, but come on, it’s not their fault and you know it. Don’t blame them, maybe just get new friends.

Case scenario two: You get in an accident. You aren’t hurt even though your car is pretty badly damaged. But what happened to that eight-year-old girl you plowed in to? Now she is paralyzed from the neck down for the rest of your life. Lucky for you, her parents are devote Christians and are just happy she is alive. They live by the verses above and feel this is a chance for their family to grow. You vow to never let something like this happen again. You even make sure that none of your friends ever drive after drinking again.

Case scenario three: You killed the girl when you ran her over. Her family is not Christian, they are utterly devastated, and you are now sitting in jail looking at a vehicular manslaughter charge. You take full blame for the accident and prepare to face the consequences. But what about that girl’s family? What did they ever do to deserve this? Do you think an incident like this is ever going to lead them to faith? No matter how long you sit in prison, it is not going to bring their baby back.

Wow, life can hand us all kinds of crap, can’t it?

I’ve come to the conclusion that suffering occurs for a lot of different reasons. We live in a sinful world and bad stuff is just going to happen. It isn’t always anyone’s fault; it just happens coz this isn’t heaven and only in heaven do no bad things happen.

I would love to copy the whole book of Job for you to read, but it is 42 chapters long. It is an amazing book, though, and if you haven’t read it, you really need to. Basically, Satan comes to God and says, “That guy, Job, you think is so wonderful, let me have my way with him and he will turn on you. He’ll stop believing that there is such a thing as a loving God.”

And Satan really does a number on Job, but Job hangs tough. He questions God but never denies Him, never gives up on Him. If you think you have ever suffered, you really need to read that book of the Bible. It will just pull at your heart.

And maybe it will answer some of the questions you have. But at the very least it will help you see how much God loves you and really doesn’t want bad things to happen to you.

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