I Am Suffering. Are You?

I've been thinking about suffering today.

At church this morning I was told that some close friends of Stephanie and I recently experienced the unthinkable tragedy of delivering a full-term baby who had no heart beat.  I cannot even begin to imagine how horrific this is for them.  My heart and prayers go out to them in this time of loss, pain, and suffering.

Sadly, my friends are not the only people close to me going through a time of suffering.  Others experiencing suffering include:
- a friend fighting brain cancer
- a friend worried about high blood pressure
- a brother who has been sick for days
- a sister who longs for a fiance in another country
- my parents who endure being apart while my dad trucks over the road
- my wife and I dealing with my unemployment
- a family at church with child issues
As much as we would like to avoid suffering, it is something which is very real in everyone's life.  If you are not suffering right now then praise God and build a solid faith foundation for when your time of suffering comes.

Suffering can feel crippling but it needn't be for Christians.  We serve a God who is BIGGER than our suffering and who is ABLE to sustain us, heal us, and renew our hope.

For those of you suffering right now, dwell on 1 Peter 5:10 and let it sink deep into your spirit as you push through your pain.
And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.
Right now it hurts.  Right now you have so many questions, so many doubts.  Right now it doesn't seem fair.  You feel alone.  You feel forgotten.  You feel sadness.  But your God is not far from you.  In his time he will restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.  Hope in the promise of his word and wait on him.

We will wait together.  All of us suffering together.