Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Driving Destination of Suffering

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials...  ~James 1:2
Years ago, this Scripture used to make my mind glitch.  I could never understand how one can be joyful in the midst of a trial, since most trials involve suffering of some kind - whether it be physical, mental, or emotional. One day, The Holy Spirit spoke this to my heart, as I was studying the Epistle of James in light of my own affliction at the time,
"There does come a joy known to those who suffer with Me.  But, that is not the result of the suffering; but, the result of the close intimacy with Me, to which the suffering drove you." 
Human beings suffer - that is a fact.  However, we are not meant to suffer the agony of our situation alone.  If we include Jesus Christ into our suffering, He bears us up; gives us grace and strength to endure until the trial is over. The intimacy we have with Him will more than sustain us because suffering is meant to produce something in our lives. It does have purpose:
My brethren, count in all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.  ~James 1:2-3.  
The word "patience" in the original Greek means: cheerful or hopeful endurance, constancy, enduring, and patient continuance.  If our suffering drives us to Jesus Christ and we become more and more intimate with Him, there is an inner joy that is unspeakable and full of glory giving us the ability to endure and be constant in our faith.

May the suffering you are going through right now draw you closer and closer to Jesus. He will be your joy and your strength, which is your "today" testimony.  Tomorrow's testimony might be that the suffering and this trial is all over. Hallelujah!               

Dedicated to Martha, an example of one full of joy in the midst of physical suffering

Because of Him and Unto Him


Martha Herden said...

Diane-what a true spirt-filled teaching lesson on learning of the Joy blended into Pain. One will think, "i am hurting like crazy, where is the Joy?" Perhaps the real Joy is when you realize, guess what-I am hurting with terrible pain and yet I found my way through it to see the sunset today, and it was by the grace of God. What better way to explain this through Scripture and being in the battle daily. Well Done Dear Friend, Well done. God bless you. Martha

Diane said...

Thank you for the encouraging words, Martha! I appreciate them. This week at my Thursday Bible study we're going to be starting James. What an example you are of these Scriptures. Have a grace-filled day today!