“When he was abused, he did not return abuse; when he suffered, he did not threaten; but he entrusted Himself to the one who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that free from sin we might live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed.” 1Peter3 (v23 )
Theme: A Suffering Heart.
Many of us suffer in different ways: weariness, illness, loneliness, through relationships or ageing. It is possible to be dragged down by negatives e.g. things we can no longer do, physical pain and worries. How do you respond to suffering in your life?There is a defence mechanism in us that wants to hide pain and push it down into the depths of our being. However, it is never dealt with when we do that and often re-emerges to cause trouble.
There is another response, which initially we shy away from. Open yourself to Christ and let Him make his home in the part of you that is hurt. Christ suffered and died for us – he knows our difficulties.
Jesus said, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.”
Jesus can work through our sufferings to bring peace, wholeness and blessings.
How can suffering help us to progress spiritually?
· We have more time to reflect on our life, leading to conviction of sin and repentance.
· We have more compassion for others who are suffering.
· We are drawn closer to Jesus and depend on him.
· There is nothing for SELF in suffering which leads to greater humility.
· God can take away fear of suffering and death.
· If we open our hurts to Christ he can make us whole.
Let Christ open your suffering heart and expand the boundaries so that you may love Him and others more deeply. Christ will treasure the gift of your suffering heart and take loving care of you.