It is normal, when dark clouds come, that we get afraid. We alter our plans, and we look for cover.
When we read the Word, how do we find joy in the midst of suffrage? To us, Christians this is a strange thought. We tend to think life will be easy, there will be no problems to encounter or there will be a myriad blessings along the way. Yet, this is not what the Bible teaches us about life.
James 1:2 “consider it all joy my brethren, when you encounter various trials.”
I know someone that saw his wife and children, who were fallowing in in another car, getting into an accident in front of his eyes. His wife received a broken back, and the children all had various broken limbs. He said, “as I followed the ambulance, I began to sing hymns of joy not knowing what I am looking at, or what I was going to encounter. When I got to the hospital, the Holy Spirit ministered to my soul like no one else could.”
I Peter 4:13 “to the degree that you share the suffering of Christ, keep on rejoicing.”
Paul says Philippians 3:10 “the fellowship of Christ suffering.”
God gives us opportunities to look through the window of His suffering to fellowship and understand Him better through that experience. To see suffering is an opportunity to grow, learn, and identify with our Savior.
You might say pastor this is hard, and I agree. A baby does not like to be born, but it is better for the baby to know life to the fullest, to be loved, and cared for outside the womb.
Michele and I have had our share of trials, and we don’t wish them on anyone, but we became stronger in spite of it and experience the Father’s love in a new and fresh way. We have grown in our walk with the Lord.
Pastors, health care workers, police officers, teachers, social workers and others that serve the community see people’s suffering up close and personal, and we are at a loss to know how to minister to them, but not the Lord! He knows what He is doing.
I pray today through your dark clouds, that you will trust Him who is your God of all comfort.
Bill Badal is Pastor Emeritus at First Baptist. He was born and raised in Baghdad, Iraq, and moved to the United States as a teenager.