WEEKLY DEVOTIONAL - Feb 22nd
Suffering is something that we do - with no choice.
I'm surprised about the attitude of some towards suffering these days. They treat it as an offense. As if someone purposely did something to them. The weather isn't right - well, that's climate change. People are sick with Covid - well, someone didn't wear their face mask. Some have cancer; well, if people weren't so greedy, we could cure cancer. Finger-pointing and name-calling have become a way of life.
Now I am the first to say; I don't like suffering. Pain and I are very well acquainted with each other, but we're not best friends.
What does the Bible say about suffering? A Lot!
Then who should I blame? Satan. Yup! Suffering is his idea, and he would like nothing better than to oppress you to the point of abject failure. When he tempted Adam and Eve to eat the fruit, it introduced suffering, disease, and death. Adam and Eve do have some responsibility in this, but my point is, it's all Satan's idea.
Why doesn't God do something about it? He did.
We are sinners - Rom 3:23. Because we have sinned, we have introduced suffering into our lives. "But Pastor, I've given my life to Christ. Why do I still have to suffer?" Jesus said, "… and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike." Matt 5:45 You and I live in a world that will generally suffer storms, earthquakes, hurricanes, and such. You and I live in a world that will suffer from sin, racism, wars, disease, and poverty. You and I live in a world where we will suffer specifically cancer, divorce, depression, and crime, for example. Our sinful bodies will rot and decay like all others. Heb. 9:27
That's why we need His promises.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego went into a fiery furnace.
Job suffered greatly at Satan's hand.
Joseph suffered in an Egyptian prison.
John, Peter, and Paul all suffered in prison.
James was beheaded.
Stephen was stoned to death.
And they all claimed the promises of God for themselves.
God loves you, always. Romans 8:38-39
He will never leave you or give up on you. Deut 31:6
If you die, you will be with Jesus in heaven. John 3:16
God has a purpose for your life. Psalm 139
You are the apple of God's eye. Zech 2:8
God has a plan for you - Jer. 29:11
God will give you strength - Phil 4:13
God will hear your prayers if you are seeking Him with all of your heart. John 14:13 -14
There are 8,802 more promises in the Bible. They are there because your Savior, Jesus, died on the cross to make them possible. His sacrifice is your gain. Find your promise and claim it for yourself.