I write this for those that find them in a tough season of life. Particular my friends from Church Online who are going through various trials in life; having to (or learning to) suffer well.
suffer: to undergo, be subjected to, or endure anything unpleasant.
1 Peter 4:13 (NIV)
13 But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.
Waiting on God in the midst of a potential divorce. Constantly struggling with health issues. Feeling isolated and alone. Relational heartbreaks. Waking up and realizing your life isn’t what you dreamed of . . .
There’s no denying we all go through seasons of trials which test our endurance and faith in God.
I pray 1 Peter 4:13 plants you squarely in the Word of God and reminds you of the hope you have in Him.
Suffering well promotes and prepares.
It promotes the Gospel and prepares for future glory.
Suffering Well Promotes the Gospel
Christians demonstrate the most Christ-likeness to the world in our sufferings.
The Good News isn’t that our lives are always peachy keen.
The Good News is that our lives on earth are only temporary. That our hope is in Jesus Christ and the life to come. The Good News is that no matter what happens to us externally, we are internally regulated by our faith in Jesus Christ.
He gives us hope when there seems to be none. He gives us strength when we lack it ourselves. He gives us courage when we are scared out of our minds.
This type of Good News is only visible to the world when we suffer well.
Suffering Well Prepares for Future Glory
When we “participate in the sufferings of Christ,” we conform more to the likeness of Christ. As we do that we also get to participate in His glory.
Jesus’ faithful suffering paved the way for his exaltation to the right hand of God.
There’s no telling what glory God wants to reveal on the other end of your suffering. The only way to find out is to suffer well. And be steadfast and obedient, as Jesus did, to the very end.
1 Peter 4:13 uses the word “overjoyed” to describe the feeling you’ll have when God’s glory is revealed.
Look forward to it!
1 Peter 4:29 (NIV)
19 So then, those who suffer according to God’s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.
Commit your situation to God. Believe He is faithful. Continue to suffer well.
God has your back. He sees you. And he is for you every step of the way.
With much love,
Photo courtesy of Cia de Foto.