"And since we are His children, we are His heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share His glory, we must also share His suffering." Romans 8:17 NLT
We don't like to talk about suffering. Even less, we don't like to suffer. We pay millions of dollars to avoid suffering. We purchase appliances, medicines, and even addictions to ease our suffering. We like the scriptures that teach prosperity, happiness, and ease. But, we avoid the passages that speak to our suffering.
There are various types of suffering. I just lost a close friend. His wife is suffering her loss. Some suffering is self-inflicted. We spend without thinking and suffer the consequences of debt or bankruptcy. We treat someone we say we love with contempt and suffer the lose of a relationship.
Sometimes we suffer for doing the right things. We suffer because we follow Jesus. The Christ follower that won't compromise their relationship with Jesus for an immoral relationship with a lover. They suffer loneliness and rejection. The person that won't compromise their relationship with Christ over their family. They suffer loss and rejection.
Jesus suffered in our humanity. He suffered through rejection, temptation, loss, ridicule, poverty and finally the cross. Don't think that God is angry with you, uncaring or unreal when you suffer. Jesus said that in this world we will have suffering. But He also said that we should take heart, because He overcame the world. He has something much better in store for us.
We are not alone in our sufferings. In the midst of your suffering cling to Jesus. Cling to your living hope!
"Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean He no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, 'For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.') No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:35-39 NLT