This is a Guest Blog by Chris Goppert which appeared in the U.K. publication The Voice where it was entitled “Drawing Strength from the Right Sources: Suffering for the Child of God Benefits the Soul.” It contains thought-provoking truth:
Suffering that does not result from discipline for a known sin can be profitable for the believer and glorifying to God.
·Joseph in Prison ~ “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Genesis 50:20).
·Hezekiah's Illness ~ “Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish. In Your love you kept me from the pit of destruction; You have put all my sins behind your back” (Isaiah 38:17).
·Paul's “Thorn in the Flesh” ~ “To keep me from becoming conceited... there was given me a thorn in my flesh... to torment me” (2 Corinthians 12:7).
·Paul's Imprisonment ~ “Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel” (Philippians 1:12-14).
·The Man Born Blind ~ “‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life’” (John 9:1-3).
Trials allow maturity to develop fully—“Perseverance must finish its work, so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1:4).
For forty-nine years Charles Simeon served as the minister of Trinity Church in Cambridge, England. A friend once asked Simeon how he endured opposition to his ministry. Pastor Simeon replied:“My dear brother, we must not mind a little suffering for Christ's sake. When I am getting through a hedge, if my head and shoulders are safely through, I can bear the pricking of my legs. Let us rejoice in the remembrance that our holy Head has summoned all His suffering and triumphed over death. Let us follow Him patiently, we shall soon be partakers of His victory.” (see also 2 Corinthians 1:7)