Sunday, October 14, 2018

Suffering is a gift ..that won't last forever. The ultimate experience at the end for us is JOY, believer, when we see His face. But we can inJOY fellowship with Christ all the way through.

Suffering is a gift.. of sorts. Yup, a real gift.
Praise the Lord  I N  all circumstances!

Let's look at God the servant -- I mean the servant Jesus, that suffered a lot for us.

If we as believers suffer with Him, we will also reign with Him.  

Yes, Isaiah 52:13 through chapter 53 describes Christ with clarity -- God’s perfect sacrifice for the sins of the world (Acts 8:26-40). The prophet Isaiah tells us how Christ the Servant suffered for doing God’s will without any spiritual compromise, and then was highly exalted by the Father. That’s His order.  Humiliation and then exaltation, suffering and then glory. Let’s go through this passage verse by verse. Here below are the key themes of this prophecy.

To
·        It’s time to wake up (v.1, 51:9, 17, Rom 13:11-14, Lam 3:22-23)
·        It’s time to dress up (v. 1)
·        It’s time to speak up (v. 7-10)
·        It’s time to clean up (vv. 11-12)

Personally, I DON'T DESIRE SUFFERING. I never SEEK IT OUT or intentionally “bring it on” trying to earn favor with God. WHY act religious and DO THAT? Are you saved?.. IT IS INDEED GIVEN TO SUFFER. that’s TRUE! Accept it with grace.
IT'S A GIFT -- SUFFERING IS, BUT JESUS IS THE BEST GIFT GIVEN. SUFFERING FOR ME? REALLY? YUP, FOR YOU TOO. ACCEPT IT. PAUL SAID, "FOR TO YOU IT HAS BEEN GRANTED ON BEHALF OF CHRIST, NOT ONLY TO BELIEVE IN HIM, BUT ALSO TO SUFFER FOR HIS SAKE…" PHILIPPIANS 1:29 NKJV

Suffering a whole lot or a little bit.. what is it exactly? Simple. It's in having what you don't want, it's in wanting what you don't have.

When God gives suffering, along with that He gives us.. Himself.
Do you have cancer? Sorry. You don’t want it. Did you lose your husband? Want him back? Paul, Silas and Peter all had some bars in prison. They didn’t want em. They wanted liberty to serve God by preaching. God used them there. They didn’t choose those bars. That’s not really a good situation for all, but it was the will of God for them during those times they were locked up. Suffering, it’s a great mystery. Where did Paul pen most of the New Testament.. that has strengthened and comforted so many people? Think ‘bout it. Let go of the reigns into God’s hands. Let go of what you can’t control anyways.
IF IT WASN’T FOR SUFFERING, MILLIONS OF HUMANS WOULDN’T DEVELOP AN ATOM OF AFFECTION. THAT’S WHAT GEORGE MCDONALD TAUGHT US OVER AND OVER AGAIN. EVERY MOTHER KNOWS OF THE JOY THAT FOLLOWS right AFTER THE SUFFERING OF CHILDBIRTH. IT’S A GIFT OF SUFFERING (easy for me to say huh). JESUS WAS GIVEN A CUP FROM THE FaTHER, AND that cup WAS FILLED WITH SUFFERING.  

It pleased to the Father what Jesus accomplished, but not that His son felt the pain. Listen, suffering is a megaphone-gift from God Himself. Sin has entered into this earthly situation. Wasn’t God’s fault at all. We now live in a sin-cursed fallen world here.

Listen, God whispers to us while we are having a really good time, but He shouts to us in our pain. Mr. C.S. Lewis tells us this. We can’t evade God when we are in pain. Some try for a while. We will think of Him and we can call out to Him while suffering. You and I can see His face so to speak, in the darkest valleys. It is required of us to suffer. The Bible says, “Unto you it is given to suffer” – that’s an utter foreign to my nature. This concept is an outrage; it’s anathema to our nature.

But none the less.. suffering is a gift. In it, God reveals His will to me. 
The handicaps, the earthquakes, the trials, the testings, the loses, the famines bring such pain.. but I trust Him. By His grace we go on with Him. For God so loved the world that He sent His only Son here to suffer in our place..even unto death. Jesus’ real hands were nailed to real wood by real wicked men.. for us! Some say it was the Jew’s fault. It was our fault. Yup, He was nailed by people like you and me. By sinners like me.   

Have you tasted the bitter without the sweet? Sorry. You know the darkness comes before the light, and the rain falls before the flower blooms.
Suffering, have you met singles who SO want to be married.. and married people who SO want to be single again? I think we all have. Look unto Jesus your first-love. The Bible says…

"FOR YOU HAVE BEEN GIVEN NOT ONLY THE PRIVILEGE OF TRUSTING IN CHRIST BUT ALSO THE PRIVILEGE OF SUFFERING FOR HIM." NLT #EMPH-MINE

In 2 Corinthians 12:7-9, The Apostle Paul says, “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me.” He could have become conceited inside, but God loves Him so much!

Where is your peace? "IN ACCEPTANCE LIETH PEACE." ~ AMY CARMICHAEL

Weeping may endure and seem to go on for a whole night at times.. yes, with long piercing, stabbing pain, or a poignant tear-filled night, but joy comes in the morning. See Psalm 30:5. 

Jesus was given a cup... and in that cup was suffering. The Father allowed it. We leave the whys with him. Sometimes He tells us why.

"I stood a mendicant of God before His royal throne
And begged him for one priceless gift, which I could call my own.
I took the gift from out His hand, but as I would depart
I cried, 'But Lord this is a thorn and it has pierced my heart.
This is a strange, a hurtful gift, which Thou hast given me.'
He said, 'My child, I give good gifts and gave My best to thee.'
I took it home and though at first the cruel thorn hurt sore,
As long years passed I learned at last to love it more and more.
I learned He never gives a thorn without this added grace,
He takes the thorn to pin aside the veil which hides His face." ~ Martha Snell Nicholson

When my little sister Kathy was murdered at age 29, it hurt a lot of people. Had to do the funeral. Then later on.. I also had to do that for her 24 year old son Dutch (who had actually witnessed that ordeal of his mom years before) burying him in the same location. It hurt a lot of us. Why did God allow it? It's none of my business. I am to leave the whys with Him.

Yes, sometimes God tells us why this or that happened, but why should we demand to know. He owes me nothing and I still trust Him. When John the baptizer landed in prison for doing the will of God... He heard almost a cryptic message from his dear Leader, Jesus.  

"..and blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me." ~ Jesus
Not sure what you’ve been going through. The Lord asks you.. Will you still love me? Will you trust me? Will you follow me?

Some of the pain people go through isn't really needful, but some is for some people. Does God allow suffering? Yes He does. Today we want everything in America to always be really fun, really exciting and really comfortable too. Very VERY comfortable and luxurious, but think ’bout this, believer: Trouble and perplexity drive us to prayer, and prayer drives away trouble and perplexity. 

“What a friend we have in Jesus all our sins and grieves to bear
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer
Oh what peace we often forfeit of what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer
Have we trials and temptations is there trouble anywhere
If we have don't be discouraged take it to the Lord in prayer.”
by Charles Crozat Converse with Joseph Scriven


 “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me." 2 Corinthians 12:9

O what needless pain we sometimes bear. What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!

God can use suffering to help for godly character. Ask yourself.. Who are the lives that have been profoundly a bright beacon to you.. who have been a huge blessing to you? Ask. Thus far.. what lives have impacted me for eternity the most? Every one of them, yes, every single one of those people.. have suffered. 
Paul was GIVEN a thorn. Given! He had a wonderful spiritual experience.. was caught up into the third heaven. That was a gift too. We'd love to see all he saw up there so we could write a book and get on TV right? He didn’t dig the thorn, but God didn't take it away either. It was literally a messenger of Satan. That’s what the Word says. Did Paul have a demon inside him? NO, but he had the Holy Spirit inside! The thorn was permitted and not only that.. it was ordained by God in order to keep Paul from getting absurdly puffed up or conceited. He could have been tempted to become prideful, but humility is far better for us. Want more grace? Humble yourself before circumstances do that.

SUFFERING IS A NECESSITY. ACCEPT THis GIFT AND EMBRACE THE CROSS. Follow Christ’s example in Suffering. Forgive. Love people. Pray for your enemies.  

"THERE ARE WORLDS TO BE REDEEMED FROM PAIN IN THE END, BUT THEY CAN ONLY BE REDEEMED THROUGH PAIN. SUFFERING IS PART OF THE PLOT OF A LOVE STORY, THE LOVE STORY OF JESUS CHRIST WHO LOVED US AND GAVE HIMSELF FOR US. THAT SELF-GIVING MEANT SUFFERING. FROM THE VERY BEGINNING.” ~ ELISABETH ELLIOT 

Think of the Cross and Christ’s experience on it entails – he obeyed the Father. Choose to take up your cross and follow God. The suffering precedes the satisfaction. God and Heaven are there for you, so make your reservations in advance. Only one way in – Jesus Christ.

Walking by faith in the Lord means it won’t always be peaches and fragrant roses here. We must give up our right.. to ourselves. Sure, He works in me both to will and to do of His good pleasure, but still I must give up myself, my own choices and preferences if He is to be Lord of my life. Amy Charmichael taught us this. More importantly, The Bible teaches this. How did Jesus our great example live -- what did he experience here? The Bible says...

"He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no stately form or majesty to attract us, no beauty that we should desire Him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief. Like one from whom men hide their faces, He was despised, and we esteemed Him not. Surely He took on our infirmities and carried our sorrows; yet we considered Him stricken by God, struck down and afflicted" Isaiah 53:2-4

So many people today say “Don’t live in denial, Dude.” but I say do! Live in self-denial obey Jesus. Self DENIAL CAN BE A GOOD THING -- IT'S A CHRISTIAN CONCEPT. SAY NO TO SIN AND FEELINGS AND MR. LU-CIFER OR HIS BUDS THAT TELL YOU TO GO DO WRONG. SUBMIT TO GOD AND RESIST ALL DEVILS (FALLEN ANGEL-LOSERS). DIE TO YOUR OWN WILL, TO THE WILL OF THIS WORLD, AND TO SELF -- TO YOUR OLD FLESHLY NATURE. TAKE UP YOUR CROSS AND FOLLOW JESUS. NOW IS GOOD FOR THAT. DIE TO SELF. 

THINK ABOUT IT. THE CROSS BEFORE THE CROWN. IF WE SUFFER WITH HIM (JESUS) WE WILL ALSO REIGN WITH HIM. SUFFERING PRECEDES SATISFACTION. SURE.. EVEN GOD HIMSELF DIDN'T TAKE A SHORTCUT ROUTE TO THIS. BEEN READING ISAIAH 53. THE ROOT OF DEPRESSION IN MOST CASES IS BITTERNESS. DO YOU FEEL THAT GOD OR SOMEONE ELSE DOWN HERE HAS DONE SOMETHING UNFORGIVABLE? PLEASE COME TO CHRIST WHO SUFFERED FOR YOU, WHO PRAYS FOR YOU.. OR COME BACK TO HIM. ARE YOU SUFFERING? HE CAN FORGIVE, YOU CAN FORGIVE OTHERS. HE CAN SAVE AND COMFORT YOU. DO THE NEXT INDICATED (BY THE HOLY SPIRIT) THING. THE LORD REQUIRES THAT WE BELIEVERS.. SUFFER SOME HERE. 

I COMMEND TO YOU JESUS CHRIST WHO FELT THE LASH, HE MIGHT NOT HERE TAKE AWAY ALL YOUR SUFFERING AND ADVERSITY. REDEMPTION WAS ACCOMPLISHED THROUGH THE AGONY AND DEATH OF THE SON OF GOD. THAT WE MIGHT LIVE IN COMPANY WITH HIM AS SAVIOR AND LORD. HE COULD NOT HAVE SAVED YOU IF HE SPARED HIMSELF THE PAIN.

CHRIST HEARD THE TAUNTS FROM THE CROSS, SARCASTICALLY ONLOOKERS SAYING, “AND THOSE WHO PASSED BY HEAPED ABUSE ON HIM, SHAKING THEIR HEADS, AND SAYING, ‘YOU WHO ARE GOING TO DESTROY THE TEMPLE AND REBUILD IT IN THREE DAYS, SAVE YOURSELF! IF YOU ARE THE SON OF GOD, COME DOWN FROM THE CROSS!’ LIKEWISE, THE CHIEF PRIESTS, SCRIBES, AND ELDERS MOCKED HIM..” MATTHEW 27:40

Be encouraged. God promises you, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you.” Isaiah 43:2  Facebook.com/shareJesus

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