I lifted a heavy weight. My arm struggled to reach it all the way to my shoulder. Although the weight training work was hard, I knew the result — down the road — would be significant, good even. There is gain, often, through pain.
After working out, I couldn’t help but think: Sometimes, God permits our pain for His greater gain.
“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” (2 Cor. 4:17)
“Hard” produces something. The grueling, horrible and it-feels-like-you-are-going-to-break pain is not a waste. It is not trash. It is not something we run from. Instead, we hold God’s hand and trust Him to carry us through.
I met with a friend not long ago who experienced major relational pain with a friend. The conversations were painful. The decisions she had to make were even harder. She didn’t know if she could set boundaries. Yet, looking back, I see that her life is now transformed because of what she endured and how she trusted God. There was a greater glory God was working (even when she couldn’t see it). Now, she is serving God and others like never before. God may not have caused her pain (we have an enemy), but He certainly used it for her (and others) good.
Be it on Earth or in Heaven, through pain, God produces something greater than we can explain.
Pain often causes us to:
– draw near God (and He draws nearer to us)
– need a greater rescue (and we gain a testimony)
– pray (and see Him move)
– look beyond what we see in the natural (and trust God by faith and not by sight)
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” (2 Cor. 4:16)
What looks like it is going to kill us, God uses to renew us. God is always producing something greater…
Need proof? Look back upon your life. What good did God teach you from your hard times of the past? How have you grown? How have you learned to endure and persevere? Give thanks. These are good lessons.
Pray: God, we love you. We know that you are not not evil. You are good, not evil. What you create is good, not evil. At the same time, there are times in life where you allow pain. God, we want to thank you, although it is difficult, for the pain we are going through. We trust you with it. We believe that you will work out a better end, then we can see. It is hard to say this. It is sometimes hard to even believe this. Will you give us faith and hope during these times? We need you more than ever. In Jesus’ mighty name. Amen.
On another note, I need your opinion! Which online course would you be the most interested in?
- How to Set Boundaries: Strengthen Relationships & Gain Peace
- How to Say No: Let Go and Gain More of What Matters
- Receiving Rest: Move Beyond Worry and Fear
I am thinking of doing a multi-part recorded and live workshop on one of the above topics. Which number are you most interested in?
Also, would a weeknight (a), a weekday (b.) or a weekend (c.) work best for you?